Pontifical Oriental Institute

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The first president of the Institute was Alfredo Ildefonso Schuster, Abbot of St. Paul Outside the Walls and later Archbishop of Milan. Benedict XV gave the Institute the authority to grant academic degrees in theology in 1920.

With “the grand design to build a bridge between the East and the West,” Schuster expressed that “the Pontifical Oriental Institute had to be an academy dedicated exclusively to the study of various theological subjects cultivated in the East.”