September 1, 2014
Karcher 'rectifies,' says pope's message is 'official'
After denying the legitimacy of a letter sent by Pope Francis to President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, now Chief of Ceremonial of the Vatican Guillermo Karcher has said the message was “official.” The Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi has also ratified Karchner’s statements.
“It has to be absolutely clarified; everything is official but it is not a letter but a telegram,” father Karchner told a radio show this morning.
“Today I rectify (my statements) and I do so with great honesty. It is not a letter; it is an official telegram, legitimate, that comes ahead of the May 25 National Holiday,” he added alluding to the 204th anniversary of the so called May Revolution that marked the beginning of Argentina’s independence from the Spanish crown.
Karcher explained as well that the telegram - that sparked such a controversy after it came publicly yesterday -, “is regularly sent to governments ahead of different national holidays to send the pope’s blessing to the government and the people.”
In the meantime, priest Lombardi explained the Vatican’s Secretariat of State usually sends such messages “in the name of the Holy Father” through the Nunciature office of each country.