What a fun story today from the Swiss Guards! I have contacted them for some photos of the new black helmets and the day’s events. Am waiting to see what they might send me but in the meantime, here is their anniversary story along with some photos I took of a Swiss Guard swearing-in ceremony. I was at their 500th anniversary celebrations in May of 2006 and have attended swearing-in ceremonies in both the Vatican’s San Damaso courtyard (the traditional venue) and inside the Paul VI Hall when weather is inclement.


The Pontifical Swiss Guards, founded in 1506 by Pope Julius II, issued a communiqué today noting that, on the occasion of the 513th anniversary of the foundation of the Swiss Guard Corps on January 22, 2019, the new helmets, manufactured in synthetic ASA with a 3D printer, will be worn.

In addition, the first clip of the video series “1506 – the Pontifical Swiss Guard story is told” will air online with the theme “Service of Honor.”

As is tradition, January 22nd was celebrated with the Eucharistic celebration in the church of Santa Maria della Pietà in Campo Santo Teutonico. The religious of the Fatebenefratelli order, who serve at the Vatican Pharmacy as well as at the Vatican’s Department of Health and Hygiene Services, were invited as guests of honor.

At the end of Mass, the Swiss Guards marched towards the guard headquarters, exiting the Arch of the Bells and crossing St. Peter’s Square. This was to commemorate the arrival at St. Peter’s Square of Swiss mercenaries on January 22, 1506, the year the Corps was founded. After return to their headquarters there was a military event during which, for the first time, the guards wore the new black ASM synthetic helmets produced with a 3D printer in Switzerland.

On the same day, the first clip of the series “1506 – the Swiss Guard story is told” aired on the guards’ social media channels with the theme “Service of Honor.” After the Christmas clip that attracted much interest, the Swiss Guard will transmit further information on the life of the Corps.

This first clip shows the Swiss Guards during the preparation of a reception of a head of state, in this case the arrival of the President of the Helvetic Confederation, Mr. Alain Berset:

During the year, the Swiss Guard will air clips on a specific topic on the 20th of each month.

JFL: The Swiss Guard website is available in three of the languages of Switzerland (German, French and Italian) and also in English:

Following is a slideshow of some photos I took at a May 6 Swiss Guard Swearing-in ceremony