Pope Francis has appointed a new vice-spokesman for the Vatican, Cristiane Murray, after recently appointing new spokesman Matteo Bruni.

In January, Pope Francis accepted the resignations of former Director Greg Burke and former Vice Director Paloma Ovejero of the Holy See Press Office. In their stead, he appointed Alessandro Gisotti as the now-former interim director.

Late last July, Pope Francis appointed Gisotti’s successor, Matteo Bruni, effective July 22nd, without appointing a vice director. Now Pope Francis has announced Bruni’s deputy spokesman, Cristiane Murray.

Murray, 57, replaces former vice director Ovejero as just the second woman ever to hold the position. Born March 10th, 1962 in Brazil, she went to school at the Pontifical Catholic University in Rio de Janeiro for marketing. She speaks 5 languages: Italian, Portguese, Spanish, French, and English.

Murray has worked at Vatican Radio over 25 years since 1995 as director of Portuguese programming providing commentary on papal events and travel. Since 2018 she has played an important role in planning the upcoming Synod on the Amazon set to take place later this year in October at Vatican.

The appointment completes a chance in the “fundamental structure of the Dicastery for Communication.” Read Murray’s full statement below:

“I received this appointment with emotion. For the journalists and colleagues of the Dicastery for Communication it is a great acknowledgement of our daily work to bring to the world the Gospel, the message of the Pope and of the Church. The first thank you, mine and that of all of us, especially women, goes to the Holy Father for having chosen me for this important task. I thank the Prefect, Paolo Ruffini, the Editorial Director, Andrea Tornielli, and the General Secretariat of the Synod of Bishops, led by Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri, with whom I have worked for over a year in the preparation of the Synodal Assembly for Amazonia. I guarantee my commitment and my enthusiasm to the Director, Matteo Bruni, and to all the group of the Press Office, at the service of the Holy See.”

Read Vatican Spokesman Matteo Bruni’s statement below:

“The Press Office receives with gratitude the Holy Father’s appointment of Cristiane Murray as Deputy Director of the Holy See Press Office. I am certain that her professionalism and experience, matured in the years of service to the Church and to the Holy See, will be extremely precious in this new appointment. On behalf, also, of the Press Office’s staff, I give her a warm welcome and express fervid wishes for good work.”

You can read the full document from the Holy See Press Office on the appointment of Cristiane Murray here.

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