Spei Satelles: A space mission to bring a message of hope

Third anniversary of Statio Orbis, Press release

Vatican News

A unique event in the history of space exploration and in the life of the Catholic Church.  Three years after the historic images of the Holy Father in Saint Peter’s Square, a message of hope for humanity will enter space, to reach and involve ever more people, thanks to a joint initiative of the Italian Space Agency, the National Research Council and the Dicastery for Communication

The space mission, its genesis, its details and its prospects, will be communicated at 10.30 on 27 March, the third anniversary of the Statio Orbis and the tenth of the pontificate of Pope Francis Sala Marconi, Piazza Pia 3 Rome.

On 27 March 2020 Pope Francis, alone on the parvis of an unusually silent Saint Peter’s Square and under heavy rain, prayed to restore hope to a world disoriented by the pandemic. The power of the images and words of the Holy Father left their mark on the world. From that day on, various initiatives arose to ensure that event would not be forgotten, but would instead maintain its driving force to go not only beyond the pandemic, but also to make us stronger and richer in hope in every moment of difficulty, remembering that no one is saved by themselves.

In 2021, a year after the event, the Statio Orbis with the words, images and reflections, also in the following days, became a publication that in 2022 was deposited in the world seed bank, the Svalbard Seed Vault, as a “seed of hope”.

Now, in 2023, that seed of hope will fly into space in an entirely unusual, technologically highly advanced and culturally unprecedented way, to further spread its universal message by launching several related initiatives.

The speakers will be
Dr. Paolo Ruffini, Prefect of the Dicastery for Communication
Msgr. Lucio Ruiz, Secretary of the Dicastery for Communication
Giorgio Saccoccia, President of the Italian Space Agency
Sabrina Corpino, Director of the Politecnico di Torino Systems and Technologies for Aerospace Research Laboratory (STARLab)
Dr. Andrea Notargiacomo, First Researcher, CNR Institute of Photonics and Nanotechnology
Rev. Richard A. D’Souza, S.J., Astronomer of the Specola Vaticana
Don Luca Peyron, Director of the Service for the Digital Apostolate, Archdiocese of Turin

The press conference will be livestreamed at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oTZIgZrdQMU


Journalists and media operators who wish to participate must apply, no less than 48 hours before the event, through the Holy See Press Office online Accreditation System available at: press.vatican.va/accreditamenti