Pope appoints Irish bishop to senior post in Greece
AN IRISH-born bishop has been appointed by Pope John Paul II to the position of Apostolic Nuncio to Greece, writes Ralph Riegel
Archbishop Patrick Coveney, a native of Tracton in Cork, becomes the Pope's 'ambassador' to Greece after serving for a number of years as Papal Nuncio to New Zealand.
The position of Apostolic Nuncio to Greece is regarded within the Church as extremely important because it involves relations with the Greek Orthodox Church and issues pertaining to the Holy Land where the Greek Orthodox Church controls a number of religious sites.
Greece and the Greek Orthodox Church have also served as conduits in the past to the Russian Orthodox Church with which the Vatican has had troubled relations since the break-up of the Soviet Union. Archbishop Coveney will take up his new position in March.