Catholic World News

Pope appoints American layman as chief Vatican spokesman

July 11, 2016

Pope Francis has named an American layman, Greg Burke, as the director of the Holy See Press Office, effective August 1.

Burke succeeds Father Federico Lombardi, SJ, 73, who has served in the position 2006.

Burke, 56, worked for UPI, Reuters, the National Catholic Register, TIME Magazine, and Fox News before becoming senior communications adviser to the Vatican Secretariat of State in 2012. He is a numerary, or lay celibate member, of the Opus Dei prelature, and has worked as vice director of the Holy See Press Office since February 1.

Father Lombardi’s predecessor, Joaquín Navarro-Valls, served as director of the Holy See Press Office from 1984 to 2006 and was also a numerary of Opus Dei.

On July 11, the Holy See Press Office also announced that Pope Francis has named a Spanish laywoman, Paloma García Ovejero, 40, as its vice director. Since 1998, she has worked for Cadena COPE, Spain’s second-largest radio network, and has served as its Vatican and Italian correspondent since 2012.

Further information:
Sound Off! supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

Show 2 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: Bernadette - Jul. 12, 2016 12:16 AM ET USA

    Now, this makes very good sense! Thank you, Pope Francis!

  • Posted by: ElizabethD - Jul. 11, 2016 7:33 AM ET USA

    This is beautiful news. Pray for Greg Burke.