Trip Organizer Named to Social Communications Council

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VATICAN CITY, NOV. 30, 2003 (Zenit.org).- John Paul II appointed Monsignor Renato Boccardo, until now responsible for the preparation of papal trips, as secretary of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications.



Monsignor Boccardo is replacing Bishop Pierfranco Pastore, 76, who presented his resignation to the Pope for reasons of age.

Born on Dec. 21, 1952, Renato Boccardo was ordained a priest in 1977. He entered the Holy See's diplomatic service in 1982, holding posts in Bolivia, Cameroon and France, and appointed later papal master of ceremonies in the Office for the Liturgical Celebrations of the Supreme Pontiff.

His next post was head of the Youth Section of the Pontifical Council for the Laity. On Feb. 1, 2001, he was entrusted with the organization of papal trips and, as a result, named chief of protocol with special responsibilities in the General Affairs Section of the Vatican Secretariat of State.

The Pontifical Council for Social Communications, headed by Archbishop John Foley, "is involved in questions regarding the means of social communication, so that, also by these means, human progress and the message of salvation may benefit secular culture and mores," according to the apostolic constitution "Pastor Bonus."