Prefecture of the Pontifical Household
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The Prefecture of the Papal Household is the office in charge of the Papal Household, a section of the Roman Curia that comprises the Papal Chapel (Cappella Pontificia) and the Papal Family (Familia Pontificia).
As the apostolic constitution Pastor Bonus states, "The Prefecture of the Papal Household looks after the internal organization of the papal household, and supervises everything concerning the conduct and service of all clerics and laypersons who make up the papal chapel and family. It is at the service of the Supreme Pontiff, both in the Apostolic Palace and when he travels in Rome or in Italy."
The Prefecture has competence for matters that once belonged to several offices, now suppressed: the Ceremonial Congregation, the offices of the Majordomo, the Master of the Chamber, and the Master of the Sacred Apostolic Palaces, and the Heraldic Commission for the Papal Court.
For visitors to Rome, the Prefecture's most important role is that of arranging admittance to audience of the Pope or to Mass or other functions celebrated by him.
The Pope's weekly general audience is normally held on Wednesday morning, and applications for admission should be sent directly to the Prefecture of the Papal Household (address: Vatican City; Fax + 39 06 6988 5863).
Tickets (which are completely free of charge) can be collected after 3:00 p.m. on the afternoon preceding the audience from the Prefecture's office at the Bronze Door. This is in St Peter’s Square, at the Basilica end of the right-hand colonnade. Tickets can usually be collected also in the early morning of the day of the audience, before the audience begins.
Requests to attend other papal ceremonies should also be sent to the Prefecture.
On Sundays at noon the Pope addresses the people gathered in St Peter's Square or, during the summer, at his summer residence at Castelgandolfo, and gives his blessing. No ticket is necessary.
Papal Chapel and Papal Family
The Papal Family has lay members as well as clergy. Among the ecclesiastics who have membership are other high officials of the Roman Curia, but also all apostolic protonotaries, Honorary Prelates and Chaplains of His Holiness, while the lay members include all Gentlemen of His Holiness, the Commandant of the Papal Swiss Guard and the Counsellors of the State of Vatican City.
The Papal Family includes among its members the Theologian of the Pontifical Household, currently Father Wojciech Giertych of the Dominican Order of Preachers, and the Preacher to the Papal Household, currently Father Raniero Cantalamessa. Father Giertych's predecessor was Georges Marie Martin Cottier, O.P.
List of Prefects of the Papal Household
- Mario Nasalli Rocca di Corneliano (1968–1969)
- Jacques-Paul Martin (1969–1986)
- Dino Monduzzi (1986–1998)
- James Harvey (1998–present)
- ^ Pastor Bonus - John Paul II - Apostolic Constitution Pastor Bonus
- ^ Annuario Pontificio 2008, p. 1911
- ^ Annuario Pontificio 2008, p. 1287-1288
- ^ Annuario Pontificio 2008, p. 1289
- ^ Annuario Pontificio 2008, p. 1290
- ^ P. Raniero Cantalamessa, ofmcap
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