Rome, 20 October 2008 - In the presence of the deputy chairman of the Austrian Bishop conference, bishop Egon Kapellari, the auxiliary bishop of St. Pölten, Anton Leichtfried, the Secretary General of the Austrian Bishop conference, Monsignore Ägidius Zsifkovics, and other high personalities, the former interim rector of the papal institute "Santa Maria dell' Anima", his Reverence Gerhard Hörting was given the Decoration of Honour in Silver for Services to the Republic of Austria, awarded to him by the Austrian Federal President, in the Austrian Embassy to the Holy See.
Following the sudden death of Rector Johann Hörist in April last year, the Graz-based Diocesan priest Gerhard Hörting was appointed interim rector of the institute literally overnight. At the time, the theological college was in the midst of an extremely difficult restoration phase; the interim rector not only managed to complete the extensive construction work in time within the prescribed financial framework and have the new church lighting installed, but also successfully steered the parish and the foundation through this difficult time with great personal commitment. As a result, this very important Austrian-led cultural institution in Rome, which is open to all German-speaking pilgrims, could now officially be handed over to the newly appointed rector, his Reverence Dr. Franz Xaver Brandmayr, in good order.
Austrian Embassy to the Holy See
Tel.: ++39 06 853 725
Fax: ++39 06 854 30 58