How does a priest become a papal diplomat?

I am not sure if this is the right place to post this, someone please move it if it should be somewhere else.

How does a priest become a papal diplomat? Does he apply himself (with permission from his bishop)? Does the bishop send him to be trained? Some other way? I’m mostly just curious because the former Vicar General of my home diocese left his post to join the Diplomatic Service of the Holy See.

Thank you and please excuse my bad English!

Merely from my reading over the years, I infer that it will first be sparked off by a long term trend: level of interest in certain skills, aptitudes and qualifications. Then presumably enquiries begin to be made in all directions and detailed “discerning” begins.

Hopefully it’s done with care and not too much as per “old school tie”.

What’s interesting in this case is that the priest had already attempted a range of roles up to vicar general level.

In any event I think “diplomatic service” covers a wide range of duties and requirements in itself.

I dont know…out of interest you should ask the priest who is replacing him and then post here to let us know :smiley:

I haven’t gotten a conclusive answer so I just thought I’d bump this thread. Thanks for the other answers though!

Okay, for starters, any priest is incardinated into a diocese or religious order. So what this means is that they’re “bound” to their diocese or order and so, to go anywhere else, have to be formally released by their bishop (or superior). So a priest who discerned a call to serve in this way would first be required to seek the approval of his bishop / superior before applying to the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy. At the risk of stating the obvious, a priest needs to have certain skillsets including the ability to undertake advanced studies in canon law and languages, as well as the necessary level of maturity, temperament and health to put up with some of the more rugged postings.

I’m also assuming here that priests who are members of religious orders are eligible to join the Vatican diplomatic corps but I’m unable to find any recent examples.

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