…By Judah Olanisebee for TDPel Media.
Pope Francis Requests Archbishop Gänswein to Return to Germany
In a recent announcement, the Vatican confirmed that Pope Francis has asked Archbishop Georg Gänswein to return to his home country of Germany starting from July 1.
Gänswein, who has served as the longtime private secretary of Pope Benedict XVI, has been instructed to return to his home diocese of Freiburg in southwest Germany “for the time being.”
It was further stated that Gänswein’s role as prefect of the Papal Household concluded on February 28, 2023, but no information was provided regarding any new assignment for him.
Speculations and the Future Role:
The news of Gänswein’s return to Germany was first reported by a German newspaper in early June.
Rumors and speculations surrounding the future role of Pope Benedict’s former secretary have circulated in both Rome and the German Church for months.
There were previous claims suggesting that Gänswein might serve as a papal ambassador in Costa Rica, considering his linguistic skills and vast experience.
However, the German media report indicates that Pope Francis mentioned the tradition of former private secretaries of deceased popes not remaining in Rome.
Archbishop Gänswein’s Background:
Hailing from the Black Forest region of Germany, Gänswein was ordained as a priest in 1984 by Archbishop Oskar Saier in Freiburg.
He holds a doctorate in canon law from Ludwig-Maximilian University in Munich.
In February 2020, German media reported that Gänswein had been asked to take a leave of absence from his role as prefect of the Papal Household.
Implications and Future Developments:
The decision for Gänswein to return to Germany and the conclusion of his role as prefect of the Papal Household raise questions about potential changes within the Vatican’s administration and Pope Francis’ plans for restructuring.
It remains to be seen what the future holds for Archbishop Gänswein and how his talents and expertise will be utilized in the Church moving forward.