Rev. Thomas Rosica was the official Vatican spokes-person for English media during the heady days of a papal resignation, the sede vacante, and the subsequent election of Pope Francis. The Canadian priest arrived at the Holy See Press Office with solid experience and impressive credentials. He organized the World Youth Day in Toronto, Canada in 2002. He founded and led Salt and Light Catholic Television Network in Canada since 2003. He also served as the Vatican-appointed media attaché at two world Synods of Bishops in 2008 and 2012.
Rosica gives us a fascinating look into the Lenten season that we will never forget. A personal, inside story of an historic papal transition is a both a reflection on the actual events, and a testimony to his deep love for the church. It was a moment in time when eyes and cameras around the world were glued to St. Peter’s Basilica, waiting with baited breathe for each piece of news. He writes,
Questions coming to us at press conferences and briefings revealed an immense interest in things church! From the colour of the retired pontiff’s shoes, to the papal seals that would be put on the papal apartments, to the destruction of the ring of the fisherman and papal seals, to modified, detailed rules and regulations for conclave behaviour, to the chemical products that would be used to produce the smoke. . . the world was watching and listening.
I chuckled several times thinking that the church had made such great strides these past years in the area of social communications. But for such a major event and happening as a conclave, we still relied on smoke signals.