Friday, August 31, 2012
Of your charity, pray for the repose of Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini who "was born in Turin on 15 February 1927. He entered the Company of Jesus in 1944 at the age of 17 and studied Philosophy at the Aloisianum, a Jesuit Institute in the northern Italian city of Gallarate, where he had been living for the past four years. He continued his Theology studies in Chieri (Turin, Italy), where he was ordained priest on 13 July 1952. He graduated with a degree in Theology in 1958 from the Pontifical Gregorian University and after some years teaching in Chieri, he returned to Rome, where he graduated with a degree in Sacred Scripture from the Pontifical Biblical Institute, awarded the grade summa cum laude. In 1978 he was appointed as Rector of the Pontifical Gregorian University. That same year, Paul VI invited him to preach the annual retreat in the Vatican and in 1979 John Paul II appointed him Archbishop of Milan, consecrating him in person on 6 January 1980. John Paul II also created him cardinal in the 1983 Consistory. In 1986 Martini founded the Schools of social and political sciences. The series of meetings on faith held in 1987, entitled “Cattedra dei non credenti” (Lecture Series for Non Believers) were also significant. In 1997 the late cardinal led the various events for the celebration of the 16th centenary of the death of Saint Ambrose. His Pastoral Letters and Speeches to the City of Milan were hugely resonant, beyond the territorial limits of this vast diocese. These texts often examined the world of politics and non believers. In 2002 he was awarded the Great Gold Medal of the City of Milan.
He took part in numerous Assemblies held by the Synod of Bishops and was President of the Council of Bishops’ Conferences of Europe from 1987 to 1993. In 2002 the Pope accepted his resignation which he presented upon reaching the age limit for cardinals. Martini then moved to the Holy Land where he continued his Biblical studies. In 2008 he returned to Italy to be treated for Parkinson’s. The disease gradually forced him to reduce his number of public appearances."