2020 Prize of Pontifical Academies Assigned

Press Release of the Pontifical Council for Culture

Prize Pontifical Academies
2020 Pontifical Academies Award

The 2020 edition of the Pontifical Academies Prize was inevitably postponed due to the COVID-19 emergency, reported today, May 12, 2021, the Vatican’s Pontifical Council for Culture.

The Pontifical Academies’ session, in which the Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin will hand the winners their respective prizes in the name of the Holy Father, will be held early next year, coinciding with the commemoration of the bicentenary of the birth of archaeologist Giovanni Battista De Rossi, Founder of Modern Christian Archaeology and Master of the Collegium Cultorum Martyrum, notes the press release.

The Laureates

 Proposed by the Coordination Council of the Pontifical Academies, the 2020 Prize, reserved to the Pontifical Roman Academy of Archaeology and the Pontifical Academy Cultorum Martyrum, and which consists of the Pontificate’s Gold Medal, has been awarded to Professor Gyözö Vörös, member of the Hungarian Academy of Arts, for the project The Machaerus Archaeological Excavations, illustrated in three volumes and published by Holy Land Editions (2013, 2015, 2019).

Also proposed by the Coordination Council, the Pontificate’s Silver Medal has been awarded to Dr Domenico Benoci, for his unpublished doctoral thesis “Le Iscrizioni Cristiane dell’ Area I di Callisto” [The Christian Inscriptions of Callistus’ Area I], discussed in the Pontifical Institute of Christian Archaeology; and to Dr Gabriele Castiglia, for the monograph “Topografia Cristiana della Toscana Centro-Settentrionale (Citta e campagne dal IV al X secolo,” [Christian Topography of North-Central Tuscany (Cities and Countryside from the 4th to the 10th Century], Pontifical Institute of Christian Archaeology of the Vatican 2020.

The Pontifical Council for Culture

 According to the information on its official Webpage, it is a Roman Secretariat (a Dicastery), directed by a President who is in charge of coordinating and supervising the daily work of a team of some twenty people.

The Council’s activities can be condensed into these major blocs:

  1. Hospitality to visitors. Meetings are held with Bishops who come to Rome on the occasion of their Ad Limina visits and with other groups of visitors (priests, men, and women religious, Directors of Cultural Centers, etc.). In addition, the Council receives numerous visits from exponents and representatives of the world of culture, and official delegations of Ministries and Institutions of the world of culture.
  2. Congresses: The Council organizes colloquia, study days, gatherings, and meetings and often takes part in meetings organized by other organizations at the regional, national, and international levels.
  3. Contacts. The Council maintains contacts with the other Dicasteries of the Roman Curia, with Episcopal Conferences, with local Churches, with Pontifical Legations to States, with UNESCO, and with other international and non-governmental organizations.
  4. Publications: The Council publishes the quarterly Review Culture e Fede – Cultures et Foi – Cultures and Faith – Culturas y Fe, with articles and news in Spanish, French, English, and Italian. In addition, it publishes books and booklets on different aspects of the Gospel’s encounter with cultures and the inter-cultural dialogue. The Council also publishes the minutes of the congresses it organizes.
  5. Its ordinary activity includes the daily work of departments: correspondence with the universal Church and with the world of culture; preparation of instructions for Apostolic Nuncios, reports on publications, cultural currents, and tendencies, especially five-year reports prepared by the dioceses.