Br. Consolmagno is a planetary scientist who has studied meteorites and asteroids as an astronomer with the Vatican Observatory since 1993. He had been serving as president of the Vatican Observatory Foundation, coordinator of public relations and curator of the Vatican meteorite collection in Castel Gandolfo, one of the largest in the world.
A graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Br. Consolmagno was a post-doctorate lecturer at Harvard College Observatory and at MIT before serving in the U.S. Peace Corps in Kenya, where he taught physics and astronomy. He entered the Society of Jesus in 1989.
"The church urgently needs religious who dedicate their lives to being on the very frontiers between faith and human knowledge, faith and modern science," the pope said. [Source: Maryland Province]