Monsignor Gianfranco Ravasi is the new president of the Pontifical Council for Culture. He replaces Cardinal Paul Poupard, who resigned for reasons of age.
The Vatican press office announced today the appointment of the 65-year-old Italian priest who had been the prefect of the Ambrosian Library in Milan.
At the same time, Benedict XVI appointed Monsignor Ravasi as president of the Pontifical Commission for the Cultural Heritage of the Church and of the Pontifical Commission for Sacred Archaeology.
He will receive episcopal ordination from the Pope in St. Peter's Basilica and receive the title of archbishop.
Gianfranco Ravasi was born in 1942 in Merate, in the Diocese of Milan, and was ordained a priest in 1966. Since 1989 he has been the prefect of the Ambrosian Library in Milan and major canon of St. Ambrose.
Monsignor Ravasi is the author of some 150 books and numerous articles. He writes for the Italian Catholic daily Avvenire and collaborates with various newspapers and magazines in Italy and abroad. He also writes and leads the religious television program "Frontiers of the Spirit" on Italy's Channel 5.