Friday 23 March 2018

Pope 'hand picked Irish priest' for Vatican role

Mgr Paul Tighe with Pope Francis; Mgr Tighe created the Pope's Twitter account, @pontifex
Mgr Paul Tighe with Pope Francis; Mgr Tighe created the Pope's Twitter account, @pontifex

Sarah MacDonald

The appointment of Dublin priest Monsignor Paul Tighe to a senior position in Rome was a decision made by Pope Francis and nobody else, according to Archbishop Diarmuid Martin.

The 57-year-old's position as bishop and assistant secretary to the prestigious Pontifical Council for Culture in the Vatican was a sign of the personal appreciation of the Pope for his work, said the Archbishop of Dublin.

"It was a personal decision of the Pope," added Archbishop Martin, who described the priest from Navan, Co Meath, as "a person of integrity and competence, whose innovation in media relations has made a significant impact in the Church around the world".

Bishop-elect Tighe will move from his role in the Pontifical Council for Social Communications - where he oversaw a major reform of the Vatican's operations and set up the hugely popular @pontifex Twitter handle - to his new role, which will involve seeking out ways in which the Catholic Church can create a dialogue with contemporary culture and humanism.

Mgr Tighe recently revealed how, when the Twitter account for the Pope was launched, there was an immediate attempt to drive the Pontiff out of the digital space with negative trolling.

Calling on the faithful to become "digital missionaries", he said Christians should try to give the internet a soul.

Irish Independent

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