Pope Francis appoints Lord Patten as Vatican media advisor

Nassos Stylianou
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Lord Patten has called it an "interesting and challenging" assignment (Source: Getty)

Former BBC Trust chairman Lord Patten has been appointed as a media advisor to Pope Francis, as the Vatican looks for ways to get its message across online.

Leading British catholic Lord Patten said that the role involves chairing an advisory committee examining how the Church can develop its media outlets, which include a newspaper, television offerings and a radio station, in the transition to digital.

"This is an important and challenging part-time assignment over the next year. I'm looking forward to beginning work in late September," the Conservative peer said.

The committee would then report back with its findings in 2015.

Lord Patten quit the BBC two months ago on health grounds and underwent heart surgery, but according to the Financial Times, is "easing himself back into work".

His appointment is part of a restructuring of the Vatican's financial and media structure introduced by Pope Francis. Jean-Baptiste de Franssu, the former head of Invesco’s European business, has been appointed head at the Institute for Religious Works, the Vatican bank.

The overhaul of the scandal hit institution should see the Pope strip the 127-year-old Vatican bank of most of its asset management powers.

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