New Leader Selected for Europe’s Bishops

French Dominican to Serve as General Secretary of the Commission of the Bishops’ Conferences of the EU (COMECE)

 Brother Olivier Poquillon OP commences his work as General Secretary of the Commission of the Bishops’ Conferences of the EU (COMECE) today. 

Brother Olivier Poquillon OP was born in Paris in 1966. After studies in international law, he entered the novitiate of the Dominicans in 1994 and was ordained priest in 2001.

Among other assignments, he served as an expert of the Holy See to the Council of Europe and as a military chaplain in the Balkans, Africa and the Middle East. He also chaired the Dominican Order’s Francophone Commission for Justice and Peace.

After teaching at the University of Mosul (Iraq), he was the Permanent Delegate of the Order to the United Nations from 2008 to 2013. Since then he has been the Prior of the Dominican convent in Strasbourg.

Brother Olivier Poquillon arrived in Brussels where he becomes the head of the Secretariat of COMECE, a team responsible for conducting dialogue between the Bishops of the Catholic Church in Europe and the European institutions.

COMECE, the Commission of the Bishops’ Conferences of the European Community, is made up of Bishops delegated by the Catholic Bishops’ Conferences of the 28 Member States of the European Union. A single Bishop represents Denmark, Sweden, and Finland; while the Bishops’ Conference of the United Kingdom is represented by a Bishop of the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales, and by a Bishop of the Scottish Bishops’ Conference.

In accordance with its Mission as defined in its Statutes, COMECE monitors the political process of the European Union in all areas of interest to the Church.

The Secretariat ensures the continuity of COMECE’s work. Its headquarters are in Brussels.  A small team monitors and analyses developments in EU policies and initiatives and strives to contribute to the relevant processes. The Secretariat reports to the Standing Committee and to the Plenary Assembly.

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