Pope Francis accepts Cardinal Turkson’s resignation as head of Vatican Social Development Office | Catholic National Register

The Holy See press office said on December 23 that the leaders of the dicastery had left their mandates in the hands of the pope after the end of their five-year term, which began when the dicastery was established in 2016.

VATICAN CITY – Pope Francis on Thursday accepted Cardinal Peter Turkson’s resignation as Prefect of the Vatican Dicastery for the Promotion of Integral Human Development.

He appointed Canadian Jesuit Cardinal Michael Czerny as interim head of the dicastery pending the appointment of a “new leadership”.

Cardinal Michael Czerny, Undersecretary of the Migrants and Refugees Section of the Dicastery for the Promotion of Integral Human Development. . Pablo Esparza / AIIC.

Holy See Press Office noted on December 23 that the leaders of the dicastery had left their mandates in the hands of the pope after the end of their five-year term, which began with the creation of the dicastery in 2016.

“While sincerely thanking Card. Peter K. Appiah Turkson and his collaborators for their service and while awaiting the appointment of the new leadership, the Holy Father has entrusted the ordinary management of the same dicastery as of January 1, 2022, to Cardinal Michael Czerny as interim manager. prefect. and Sister Alessandra Smerilli, FMA, as secretary, ”he said.

Czerny, who was born in Brno, Czechoslovakia, in 1946, has been Undersecretary of the Migrants and Refugees Section of the dicastery since 2017.

Pope Francis appointed Smerilli, Italian economist and nun, as acting secretary of the dicastery in August.

Sr Alessandra Smerilli speaks at a press conference at the Vatican on July 7, 2020. Daniel Ibáñez / CNA.

Sr Alessandra Smerilli speaks at a press conference at the Vatican on July 7, 2020. Daniel Ibáñez / CNA.

Cardinal Peter Turkson told reporters Tuesday that the Pope would decide his future after the end of his five-year term.

“If the Holy Father decides to make me continue, that’s what it is. If he decides to reassign me, that’s what it is, ”he said.

“We all come here to serve and support the Holy Father in his ministry, and that’s it. So your question, then, is probably just this, if I’ll be here next year. We just wait for the Holy Father to see what he wants us to do.

Following the resignation Guinean Cardinal Robert Sarah as Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship in February, Turkson was the only African to head a Vatican department.

Joel C. Hicks