On Monday, October 15, 2018, Monsignor Edgar Pena Parra took up his new functions as Substitute for General Affairs of the Secretariat of State, reported “Vatican News” in Italian.
Pope Francis, accompanied by the Cardinal Secretary of State, Pietro Parolin, presented the Venezuelan Prelate to the ensemble of the staff of the three sections of the Vatican’s Dicastery, represented by their respective superiors, and to the personnel of the Secretariat of State’s library.
The Holy Father and the new Substitute then greeted in person the officials who had gathered for the occasion.
Appointed by Pope Francis last August 15, Monsignor Edgar Pena Parra succeeds Cardinal Giovanni Angelo Becciu, who became Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints.
The Substitute directs “the first section” of the Secretariat of State who is called to direct “the affairs of the daily service” of the Pope, to foster relations with the different Dicasteries of the Roman Curia “without prejudice to their autonomy, and to coordinate the works.”
The General Affairs section also has the duty to “edit and send Apostolic Constitutions, Papal Edicts, Apostolic Letters, Epistles, and other documents,” which the Pope entrusts to them. This section carries out all acts concerning the appointments that must be carried out or approved by the Pope; it takes care of the publication of documents, publishes and diffuses official communications concerning the Pope’s acts and the Holy See’s activity.
The General Affairs section has many other responsibilities, notably that of organizing the Pope’s Apostolic Visits.
Born on March 6, 1960, at Maracaibo, Monsignor Pena Parra was ordained priest on August 23, 1985, for his native diocese.
Holder of a Licentiate in Canon Law, he entered the Holy See’s Diplomatic Service on April 1, 1993. He has held posts in Kenya, Yugoslavia, at the United Nations in Geneva, in South Africa, Honduras, and Mexico.
Pope Benedict XVI appointed him Apostolic Nuncio in Pakistan in 2011 and ordained him Bishop on February 5, 2011. In 2015 Pope Francis appointed him Nuncio in Mozambique.
Translation by Virginia M. Forrester