Pope Francis has asked an Italian bishop to carry out a visitation of the Vatican’s Congregation for the Clergy, which has oversight of the more than 410,000 Catholic priests around the world. Source: America Magazine.
Bishop Egidio Miragoli broke the news on Sunday in a letter to the priests of the Diocese of Mondovi, in Italy’s Piedmont region, where he is pastor.
In the letter, he revealed that at the end of the recent plenary assembly of the Italian bishops’ conference, Pope Francis told him he wanted “a favour” and asked the bishop to carry out a visitation of the congregation for clergy “in his name”.
He revealed that on June 3, Francis explained in some detail what he expected him to do when he met the bishop at a private audience in Santa Marta, the Vatican guesthouse where the Pope lives. The bishop did not disclose the details of his brief, and the Vatican has not commented on the meeting or a visitation of the congregation.
The northern Italian bishop, who has a doctorate in canon law from the Pontifical Gregorian University and whom Pope Francis appointed to the Diocese of Mondovi in September 2017, told his priests that the Pope’s request “took me by surprise”. He did not reveal why the Pope chose him to do this work.
The news comes on the eve of the resignation of the current prefect of the congregation, Italian Cardinal Beniamino Stella, who will turn 80 on August 18. Pope Francis appointed Cardinal Stella as prefect of the congregation in 2013.
Pope Francis orders review of the Vatican congregation that oversees over 410,000 Catholic priests worldwide (By Gerard O'Connell, America Magazine)