Monday, 15 May 2023 - 31 minutes
This week, Michael is discussing the Pontifical Swiss Guard or the Papal Guard of the Vatican. You surely know them by their conspicuous uniforms in the striking colours of blue, red, orange and yellow, with a distinctly Renaissance appearance. Always close to the Pontiff and on duty 24/7 in Vatican City.
They are intrinsically Swiss. Intrinsically Roman Catholic. And, at least for the time being, intrinsically male and mostly unmarried!
Switzerland has been linked closely to the Vatican through the Pontifical Swiss Guard since 1506. That predates the 1848, modern Confederation of Switzerland by many centuries.
Michael's guest is Jean Pierre- Roth. Among many high-level posts that he has held during his long and distinguished career, he was the President of the Swiss National Bank, from 2001 – 2009.
But the topic is not banking - he is also the President of the Foundation for the Renovation of the Swiss Guard Barracks in the Vatican.