Pius XI (1922-1939)
"Pope of the Missions" is the title which above all others suited Pius XI, a pontiff with a very determined character, able to incite the Church to undertake programmes and operations that were truly prophetic for his time.
In the missionary field the Pope did all in his power to have the territories outside Europe entrusted to the local clergy. He established the World Mission Day to promote awareness of the missionary situation. He had the magnificent building of the Urban College and University of Propaganda Fide constructed on the Gianiculum Hill so that young people of the mission countries studying for the priesthood might have a suitable preparation for their future commitment.
Pius XI is also the Pope who in the Holy Year of 1925 prompted the organization of the Universal Missionary Exhibition. The exhibition met with considerable success and became permanent in 1927 with the establishemnt of the Ethnological Missionary Museum in the Vatican, a concrete possibility for more deeply understanding the missionary activity and great religions and culture of the world.