Father Federico Lombardi, SJ, President of the Joseph Ratzinger-Benedict XVI Foundation and former Director of the Holy See Press Office, received from the hands of the Ambassador of France to the Holy See, Mister Philippe Zeller, the medal of the of the Order of the Legion of Honor, on February 22, 2017 at the Villa Bonaparte in Rome, headquarters of the French Embassy to the Holy See, announced to ZENIT yesterday the Embassy itself by way of preview.
Father Lombardi, former Director of La Civiltà Cattolica and former Provincial of the Italian Jesuits, spent almost his entire career in the realm of communications in the Vatican.
In 1991, he was appointed Director of Programs of Vatican Radio and in 2005 Delegate Administrator. In 2001, he became Delegate Administrator of the Vatican Television Center, a post he held until January 22, 2013, when Father Dario Edoardo Vigano replaced him.
On July 11, 2006, Pope Benedict XVI appointed Father Federico Lombardi Director of the Holy See Press Office. As he speaks German well, he became a sort of “spokesman of the Pope.”
He continued his mission also during Pope Francis’ pontificate until August 1, 2016. On February 29, 2016, he left the management of Vatican Radio in the ambit of the reorganization of the communications services of the Holy See and the institution of the Secretariat for Communication.
At present, he is President of the Joseph Ratzinger-Benedict XVI Vatican Foundation.