Vatican to launch new multimedia portal
Site offers one-stop shop for Vatican news27 June, 17:57
Archbishop Claudio Maria Celli, who heads the Vatican office that created the service, said Pope Benedict XVI plans to activate the site, www.news.va, with a click on Tuesday, and it will be online for the public on Wednesday.
"[It] should be an expression of our faithfulness and dedication to the Holy Father," said Celli, "for the 60th anniversary of his ordination to the priesthood".
The portal, he said, functions as an aggregator, gathering in one place the principal news items printed or broadcast by other Vatican media outlets: the newspaper L'Osservatore Romano, Vatican Radio, Vatican Television Center, the Vatican press office and information service and the Fides missionary news agency.
The site, emphasized Celli, "will not have a specific editorial slant. Each of the outlets will maintain its own autonomy and identity".
For the first few months after going online, the site will be available exclusively in English and Italian.
Plans are in the works to include Spanish, French and Portuguese versions.
The portal will contain news items relating to the comments and activities of the pontiff in the course of his tenure, as well as declarations issued by the Holy See and information about important global events and situations affecting particular churches.
Previous popes have been involved in the Vatican's communications efforts.
In 1995, Pope John Paul II headed the launch of the Vatican's home page, www.vatican.va, which will remain active and will work "in harmony with the new portal".