Elenora Giddings Ivory, who directed for nearly two decades the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) Washington office, has taken a position with the World Council of Churches. She headed the PCUSA public policy, information and advocacy office in Washington and will now head the Geneva-based WCC public witness program. “It’s one of those rare opportunities to come along,” Giddings Ivory, 62, said. Giddings Ivory will be responsible for overseeing such WCC initiatives as an ecumenical program in Palestine and Israel, the 2001-2010 Decade to Overcome Violence, and a project encouraging churches to explore and advocate for alternatives to economic globalization. She will voice such concerns to the United Nations and international financial institutions in hopes of influencing policy decisions.

President Bush has nominated Mary Ann Glendon, a Harvard Law School professor, as U.S. ambassador to the Vatican. Glendon, 69, is a longtime opponent of abortion and gay marriage and has written widely on culture and ethics in books and scholarly journals. Her appointment must be confirmed by the Senate. In 1994, Pope John Paul II named Glendon to the then-new Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, a Vatican advisory panel. She has also served on the President’s Council on Bioethics and, until her nomination November 5, was an adviser to the presidential campaign of Republican Mitt Romney.