Pope Francis Creates New Secretariat Overseeing All Vatican Communications

The Holy Father instituted the new secretariat with a letter promulgated June 27.

St. Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican flag
St. Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican flag (photo: CNA/Bohumil Petrik)

VATICAN CITY — The Vatican’s nine communications offices will soon be consolidated under the authority of the newly established Secretariat for Communications, per a Saturday directive of Pope Francis.

The Holy Father instituted the new secretariat with a letter issued motu proprio titled “The Current Communication Context,” promulgated June 27. 

“The current communication context, characterized by the presence and the development of digital media, by the factors of convergence and interactivity, requires a rethinking of the information system of the Holy See and dedication to a reorganization which … must proceed decisively towards integration and a unified management,” the Pope wrote.

“For these reasons, I desire that all organizations, which thus far have dealt with communications in different ways, be brought together in a new dicastery of the Roman Curia. … Thus, the communication system of the Holy See will respond in an ever more efficacious manner to the needs of the mission of the Church.”

The new dicastery will oversee all of the Vatican’s communications offices, including Vatican Radio, L’Osservatore Romano, the Vatican Television Center, the Holy See Press Office, the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, Vatican Internet Service, the Vatican Typography, the Photograph Service and the Vatican publishing house.

Pope Francis added that these offices “must continue their own activities, in accordance, however, with the indications given by the Secretariat for Communications.”

The secretariat will also assume responsibility for the Vatican’s website, Vatican.va, and the Pope’s Twitter account, @Pontifex.

He writes also that he established the secretariat as a result of consultation with the council of cardinals, a group of nine cardinals tasked with advising him on reform of the Roman Curia.

The current head of Vatican Television, Msgr. Dario Edoardo Viganò, has been named prefect of the new department, while Father Lucio Adrian Ruiz of the Vatican Internet Service has been appointed its secretary.

The Holy Father also named Paolo Nusiner, director of the newspaper for the bishops’ conference of Italy, Avvenire, the director general. Giacomo Ghisani, head of Vatican Radio’s International Relations Office and Legal Affairs, is vice director general.

The Secretariat for Communications will be temporarily headquartered on the premises of Vatican Radio.