The Pontifical Swiss Guard is increasing its workforce from 110 to 135 soldiers, as requested by Pope Francis
The Pontifical Swiss Guardis increasing its workforce from 110 to 135 soldiers, as requested by Pope Francis. To do so, the corps is using new recruitment tools: From now on, a Press Service and a Liaison Office will be open in Switzerland, the homeland of the Vatican army soldiers since 1506.
In addition to promoting better media coverage of the Guard by the Press Service, the Liaison Office will represent “the interests of the Corps with authorities and politicians.” The press release also announces the appointment of the new Head of the Media and Relations Office, Stefan Wyer, an independent corporate communications and policy consultant.
Since the need for guards has increased, “it is necessary to support recruitment by strengthening public relations,” the press release claims.
This initiative is crucial, since in April 2018, Pope Francis asked for an increase in personnel from 110 to 135 men. The Pontiff also allowed the appointment of more executives within the Corps, and authorized the renovation of the army’s barracks in the Vatican – a work that will begin in 2026, after the Jubilee of 2025, and that will offer single rooms for the members of the army.
Candidates for recruitment must be Swiss Catholics, single, between the ages of 19 and 30, and willing to commit to their mission for at least 26 months.