Vatican City, Apr 12, 2016 / 04:42 am
Pope Francis has appointed French-born Archbishop Christophe Pierre as the Vatican ambassador to the U.S., replacing Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, the Holy See press office announced Tuesday.
The appointment of the new Vatican ambassador – known as an apostolic nuncio – comes after Archbishop Viganò reached the retirement age of 75 on Jan. 16 of this year. The Italian prelate had served as apostolic nuncio to the U.S. since 2011.
Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz of Louisville, Ky., who heads the U.S. bishops' conference, welcomed the announcement.
"On behalf of my brother bishops in the United States, I extend Archbishop Pierre a heartfelt greeting and my prayerful support as he embarks on his service to our country," he said April 12. "A shared closeness with the Church in Mexico already creates a strong fraternal bond between us."