On May 16, 2017, the Holy See announced that Pope Francis had appointed Prof Nigel Biggar to be an Ordinary Member of the Pontifical Academy for Life. The appointment was made at the recommendation of the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby.
The President of the Academy, Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, released a statement commenting that in appointing 45 Ordinary Members and 5 Honorary Members 'Pope Francis has formed a College of academics of the highest professional standing that will offer to the Catholic Church and to the whole world a deep and wise vision in the service of human life, especially life that is weakest and most defenseless. The Academicians named by the Holy Father come from 27 countries around the world and are outstanding in diverse fields of human knowledge. Among them are a number of non-Catholics, either belonging to other religions and non-believers, a sign that the protection and promotion of human life knows no divisions and can be assured only through common endeavor.'
Pope Francis will officially launch the renewed Academy at a meeting scheduled for 5-7 October, 2017 in the Vatican.