Vatican Museums Hire Two Priest-Docents

Raphael’s “Baptism of Constantine,” from the Vatican Museums’ collection.

Starting in August, the Vatican Museums will have two priests on hand to help visitors navigate their vast collection.

According to The New York Times‘ ArtsBeat blog, the priests will be available for “spiritual advice or more basic iconographic information about the subject matter of a work of art,” and will be positioned at “two strategic points” in the museums. The news was first reported in the Vatican newspaper L’Osservatore Romano.

More from The Times:

Presumably, the priests will not be inside the Sistine Chapel, where recorded announcements shush chatty visitors on a regular basis (though the Osservatore Romano article implied that Michelangelo’s “Last Judgment” was wont to thrust spectators into existential crises, requiring the services of a pastor).

Vatican Museums Hire Two Priest-Docents