Anna Artymiak's articles

Here you can find an archive of Anna Artymiak's articles for the magazine.

The “Pope’s Protector” – Christoph Graf

Lt. Col. Christoph Graf, vice commander of the Swiss Guard, reviews Swiss Guards before Pope Francis' Christmas message and blessing “urbi et orbi” at the Vatican December 25, 2014.

An interview with Christoph Graf, new Commander of the Swiss Guard. What are the projects of the new Commander? Christoph Graf: For me it is important that the Guards feel at home here, because they are young people who leave their homes, their families and their homeland to serve voluntarily for the Pope and the […]

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The First Swiss Guard Chaplain to Be Appointed a Bishop

Msgr. Alain de Raemy leads the new recruits’ parents into the Apostolic Palace to a meeting 
with the Holy Father.

Msgr. Alain de Raemy is the first Pontifical Swiss Guard Chaplain to become a bishop. And although the Corps itself in recent years became a fertile source of priestly vocations for Switzerland, no former Swiss Guard has ever been consecrated a bishop until now… Msgr. Alain de Raemy is the first chaplain in the history […]

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Background of an Election

Michael Hesemann, German historian and writer, greets Pope Benedict XVI.

Interview with Michael Hesemann, author of Papst Franziskus: Das Vermächtnis Benedikts XVI. und die Zukunft der Kirche (“Pope Francis: The Heritage of Benedict XVI and the Future of the Church”). In July 2013, Michael Hesemann’s book Papst Franz­iskus: Das Vermächtnis Benedikts XVI. und die Zukunft der Kirche (“Pope Francis: The Heritage of Benedict XVI and […]

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The Service of a Swiss Guard

Serg. Stephan Probst on duty while Pope Francis greets the faithful from his popemobile in St. Peter’s Square before his weekly general audience.

Sergeant Stephan Probst speaks about his experience in the Pontifical Swiss Guard, in charge of the Pope’s safety. Most of the young Swiss men who decide to come to the Vatican to serve the Pope as Pontifical Swiss Guards remain for the basic period of two and a half years, but for some of them […]

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Christmas with the Band of the Pontifical Swiss Guard

A soldier of the Pontifical Swiss Guard during Pope Benedicts XVI's prayer.

The Swiss Guard Band usually performs a Christmas concert each december in St. Peters Square. Here a brief history of the band of the Pontifical Swiss Guard. One of the newest Christmas traditions in the Vatican is the Pope’s visit to a larger-than-life Nativity Scene in St. Peter’s Square on December 31 after Vespers in […]

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An Unannounced Mass at Blessed John Paul II’s Tomb

Msgr. Konrad Krajewski distributes Communion during the Mass in St. Sebastian Chapel on Thursday, October 31.

History of a tradition of Polish Thursday Masses at the St. Sebastian Chapel, in the Vatican Basilica, where Blessed John Paul II is buried. “After my death, I ask for Holy Masses and prayers.” —John Paul II, March, 6, 1979, addition to his spiritual testament.    After Pope John Paul II’s death on April 2, […]

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New Series of Pope Francis’ Books


“And now we take up this journey. Bishop and People … A journey of fraternity, of love and mutual trust. Let us pray for one another. Let us pray for the whole world that there may be a great spirit of fraternity.” These words of the newly-elected Pope Francis show the essence of his teaching […]

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Ratzinger’s Students Meet Pope Emeritus Benedict for Special Mass

Father Stephan Otto Horn.

Could you briefly describe the last Schülerkreis meeting? Father Stephan Otto Horn: The Holy Father Emeritus invited members of the Schülerkreis (former students) together with those of the New Schülerkreis (scholars of Benedict’s thought) to celebrate Holy Mass privately with him at the Vatican. We were very happy that he also gave the homily. After […]

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Three Popes of Inside The Vatican

“I arrived in Italy on the same day as Bob — on May 17, 1984. He arrived in Rome by plane from the United States; I entered northern Italy by bus from Poland. I wanted to be at Monte Cassino on May 18, but the pilgrimage was organized in such a way that we were […]

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Confuting Stereotypes of the Church and Benedict XVI as seen by Celebrities

Pope Benedict & Archbishop Georg Ganswein

  Since March 1, as he himself announced, Benedict XVI has been living “hidden from the world,” and since May 2 he has been living in the Mater Ecclesiae (Mother of the Church) monastery inside the Vatican Gardens, the residence he chose, remodelled to receive him with his personal secretary and Prefect of the Pontifical […]

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Episcopal Ordination of Konrad Krajewski and New Curial Appointments

On September 17, Feast of the Reception of the Stigmata by St. Francis, Archbishop Konrad Krajewski, new Papal Almoner (appointed on Au­gust 3) was consecrated a bishop in the Vatican Basilica by Cardinal Giuseppe Bertello, president of the Governatorate of Vatican City State, together with Archbishop Władysław Ziółek, the archbishop emeritus of Łódź, Poland (where […]

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Blessed Pope John Paul II Will Be Canonized

Msgr. Sławomir Oder, postulator of Blessed John Paul II’s canonization cause (Galazka photo)

“A miracle which will amaze the world!” In these few and mysterious words, the second miracle in Blessed John Paul II’s canonization process was being described earlier this year by people close to the cause. Then came rumors among Vatican correspondents that the chosen case involved a miracle in Costa Rica: a woman healed from severe […]

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Pontifical Swiss Guard on Facebook

Nowadays having a personal or institutional account on Twitter or Facebook has become a kind of fashion. But sometimes it is hard to know whether the profile is authentic or not. A year ago on May 4, on the occasion of the swearing-in of the Pontificial Swiss Guard, the Guard launched its first official Facebook […]

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Swearing-in Today and in the Past

There is one day a year when Vatican City and the streets around the smallest country in the world become a little Switzerland. You can hear the German Swiss language with its characteristic accent everywhere. The day is May 6, when new recruits of the Pontifical Swiss Guard swear to serve the Pope “faithfully, loyally […]

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Cardinal Kurt Koch’s Press Conference

After two months, Pope Francis’ pontificate is still in its infancy. Even for some of the cardinals who voted for him, understanding the new pontiff has been a learning process. Right after the election of the new Pope, in mid-March, many cardinal electors met with journalists to talk about the figure of the new pontiff […]

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Interview with Father Stephan Horn

Last summer, Pope Benedict surprised some close to him when, at the end of the annual Schülerkreis meeting with his former Ph.D. students, he told them that it might be the last time they would meet. I spoke about that moment, and about the Pope’s resignation, with a Salvatorian Father, Stephan Horn, who wrote his […]

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Interview with Cardinal Kurt Koch

In regard to the unity of Christians, to the question of ecumenism, what message does the Pope’s resignation send to Christians around the world? Cardinal Kurt Koch: Pope Benedict was very active in the field of Christian unity. His reflections on ecumenism were based on the ecumenical decree of the Second Vatican Council. Progress toward […]

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“Moments That Last A Lifetime”


Interview with Sergeant Major Daniel Koch of the Pontifical Swiss Guard Swiss Guard Sergeant Major Daniel Koch: Yes, of course. It seems like it was yesterday. I remember the first day very well, as we arrived late. There were six of us. It was October 1, 1992. We took the first flight from Switzerland at […]

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The Late Gregor Volken

“Acriter et fideliter.” With courage and faithfulness. This is the ancient motto of the Pontifical Swiss Guard, and the words well describe the life and character of the late Gregor Volken, vice-commandant of the corps, who served four Popes for 38 years and two months, making his one of the longest services in the history […]

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“The Frescoes Are Safe for at Least 500 Years”

An interview with Dr. Antonio Paolucci, head of the Vatican Museums. Is the Sistine Chapel at risk? Are Michelangelo’s frescoes disappearing like the paintings in the tombs of the Valley of the Kings in Egypt? Vatican officials say there is no reason for concern despite the alarm recently caused by rumors circulating for the celebration […]

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