In a statement released to journalists, Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, director of the Holy See Press Office gave new information on the Ring of the Fisherman. The ring was given to Pope Francis at the beginning of the Inauguration of the Petrine Ministry Mass today held in St. Peter’s Square.
The Ring of the Fisherman, which depicts the apostle St. Peter holding keys, was designed by the artist Henry Manfrini and was originally made for Pope Paul VI. “The ring was never cast into metal, and Paul VI had never wore it because he always wore the ring that was commissioned at the time of the Second Vatican Council,” the statement read.
The wax cast of Manfrini’s design was kept by the late Archbishop Pasquale Macchi, the former personal secretary of Pope Paul VI. According to Fr. Lombardi’s statement, Archbishop Macchi left the wax cast, along with other objects to Monsignor Ettore Malnati, who in turn commissioned a gold-plated silver ring from the wax cast.
The ring, along with other possible rings were presented to the Holy Father by the Papal Master of Ceremonies, “through the auspices of Cardinal [Giovanni Battista] Re.
“It was this ring,” Fr. Lombardi’s statement concluded, “that Pope Francis [chose] to be the ring of the Fisherman, presented to him at the Mass of Inauguration of his Petrine Ministry.