Adventures of a Vatican Astronomer

A Magi Project Event

Adventures of a Vatican Astronomer

MON 11th February 2019


Bodeck Lounge, Houston Hall, University of Pennsylvania


Join us for an evening with Br. Guy Consolmagno, head of the Vatican Observatory. Br. Guy Consolmagno is both a Jesuit brother and a planetary scientist at the Vatican Observatory, splitting his time between the meteorite collection in Rome and the Vatican telescope in Arizona. Thanks to his Vatican connections, his work has sent him around the world several times to dozens of countries and every continent (including a meteorite hunting expedition to Antarctica). In this talk he will share some of those adventures, and reflect on the larger meaning of our common experience as scientists... not only what we do, but why we do it.


Br. Consolmagno studied and conducted planetary science research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the University of Arizona, and Harvard College Observatory before taking his vows as a Jesuit brother in 1991. He has published over 40 scientific papers on meteorites, asteroids, and the origin and evolution of small bodies in our solar system. He has also authored multiple books, the latest being Would You Baptize an Extraterrestrial? In 2014, he was awarded the Carl Sagan Medal for outstanding science communication by the American Astronomical Society. The following year, he was appointed by Pope Francis to be the Director of the Vatican Observatory, where he currently oversees the entirety of the Vatican’s astronomical research. 

Read Collegium and Magi Project Student Fellow Vito Acosta’s reflection on Br. Consolmagno’s talk here.

Screenshot 2019-01-09 at 16.56.16.png