This is the first appointment of the religious leadership after Korea’s new constitution came into effect in June. Portuguese Cardinal José Tolentino de Mendonça was appointed Monday, September 26th as President of the New Religion for Culture and Education.
At the age of 56, the man who ran the Vatican Library and Archives became director of this new institution, which was born from the merger of the Catholic Education Congregation and the Pontifical Council for Culture.
Bible scholar, poet, writer
Biblical scholar, poet, writer, Cardinal Mendonca, was ordained a priest at the age of 24 in Funchal, the capital of the Madeira archipelago, off the coast of Morocco. Instructor at the Portuguese Catholic University, where he was vice-rector and head of the Center for Religious and Cultural Studies, was appointed in 2018 to head the Vatican Library and Archives, before being created in 2019.
A recognized voice in the cultural life of his country and, in particular, received, in 2016, the Grand Prize for Literature from the Portuguese Writers Association. in Our Father who is on earth, It was recently published in French by editions of Part One, but in its eleventh edition in Portuguese, the Cardinal reflects at length on God’s experience in the contemporary world.
In this deep and poetic book, he quotes many authors such as Simone Weil, Rainer Maria Rilke, and Anton Chekhov.
Francis’ new “Minister of Culture and Education” added a secretary in the person of Father Giovanni Cesare Bagazi, 57, until then professor of ecclesiology at the Pontifical Institute of Theology of Jean-Paul II.
Last move announced Monday 26 September: It was Monsignor Vincenzo Zani, current secretary of the Congregation for Catholic Education, who replaced Cardinal Mendonca in the archive and library.