Seoul, South Korea, Mar 9, 2018 / 16:14 pm America/Denver (CNA).
The Vatican’s recent diplomatic appointment to South Korea gained added significance as President Donald Trump announced that he will meet with North Korea’s Kim Jong-un for nuclear negotiations within the next two months.
Pope Francis’ appointed Monsignor Alfred Xuereb to serve as the Apostolic Nuncio to Korea beginning March 19.
"As the pope continually shows his concern for the reconciliation of the two Koreas and [prays for] peace on the Korean Peninsula, the new nuncio will play an active role in bridging the gap between the two Koreas and working for peace in the region," said the Acting Apostolic Nuncio to Korea, Monsignor Marco Sprizzi, according to UCA news.
Monsignor Xuereb, who previously served as a private secretary to both Pope Francis and Benedict XVI, will be consecrated a bishop as he takes up his first diplomatic posting for the Vatican.
Although he lacks the diplomatic experience of his predecessors in the Korean nunciature, the Maltese cleric is reported to be close to Pope Francis.