VATICAN CITY (CNS) — The Vatican Secretariat for Communication and the Jesuits have signed a formal agreement ensuring a Jesuit presence in Vatican media, even after the Jesuit-run Vatican Radio no longer exists as a separate entity.
Msgr. Dario Vigano, prefect of the secretariat, and Jesuit Father Juan Antonio Guerrero Alves, delegate of the Society of Jesus, signed the agreement Sept. 21.
The Vatican said the agreement “renews the presence of the Jesuit fathers in the new communications reality of the Holy See.”
Msgr. Vigano said the Vatican and the Society of Jesus spent a year and a half on the “work of discernment and rethinking the presence of the Jesuits no longer within Vatican Radio, but in a much larger reality.”
“Times change,” Father Guerrero said regarding the Jesuits no longer running the radio. “It is part of the vocation of the Society of Jesus to serve the church as the church requests. Our contribution in the sphere of communications makes us happy, because we can contribute to the reformed desired by the Holy Father.”
The Vatican did not release details about specific roles or tasks to be assigned to Jesuits within the media overseen by the secretariat.
Vatican Radio began broadcasting in 1931; a Jesuit priest, Father Giuseppe Gianfranceschi, was director of Vatican communications at the time and enlisted the help of the Italian inventor Guglielmo Marconi in launching Vatican Radio. Jesuits ran the radio for more than 80 years.
Pope Francis created the Secretariat for Communication in January 2015 to coordinate the work that had been done individually by the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, the Vatican press office, the Vatican internet office, Vatican Radio, the Vatican television production studio and the Vatican newspaper, printing press, photograph service and publishing house.