Rethinking United States and Vatican Diplomacy

December 4, 2020
1:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m. EST
Location: Online Zoom Webinar

Over the past four years the Trump administration’s relationship with the Holy See has been fraught with tension, including a recent (September 2020) diplomatic rift between U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and top Vatican officials over relations with China. The incoming Biden administration offers the opportunity to reset the conversation and focus on the role of the Holy See as an independent nation with diplomatic relations all over the world.

This conversation looked back at the history of U.S./Vatican diplomatic relationships and then forward to how the incoming administration can build upon areas of agreement and collaborate on long-standing issues in a changed global environment. The panelists discussed the upcoming appointment of a new U.S. ambassador to the Holy See, rebuilding multilateralism, the release of the McCarrick report, China, and the role of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, among other topics. Two key questions framed the discussion: what has been the biggest challenge over the past four years, and what are the biggest challenges moving forward? The panel was moderated by Emma Green, staff writer at The Atlantic.

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