The Vatican has announced that Cardinal Jose Saraiva Martins C.M.F. on reaching retirement age has retired as Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints and that Archbishop Angelo Amato S.D.B., formerly Secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, is appointed in his place.
When we were reporting Cardinal Martins recent visit to Lebanon and Ehden, we mentioned that there was media speculation in Italy that the Cardinal would be soon retiring.
The Archbishop was born at Molfetta, in the Province of Bari, Italy, in 1938. He was ordained a priest with the Salesians Of Saint Bosco in 1967, he holds an doctorate in Theology from the Pontifical Gregorian University. He was Professor of Dogmatic Theology at the Pontifical Salesian University and Dean of the Faculty of Theology and Vice Rector. In 2002 he was appointed archbishop and Secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. The Congregation has been known during its history as the Sacred Congregation of the Universal Inquisition and Sacred Congregation of the Holy Office. It is expected that the Archbishop will be made a Cardinal following his appointment as Prefect.
The Salesians of Saint (Don) Bosco was founded in the late nineteenth century by Saint John Bosco.
The Archbishop as the Vatican's second-highest ranking doctrinal official has spoken forcefully in the media as well as in the pulpit against abortion, euthanasia and gay marriage. He was also highly critical of the film, The Da Vinci Code, at the time the film was released.
We hope that before the future Cardinal's own retirement he will visit Ehden, as did his predecessor, on the occasion of Venerable Patriarch Estephan Douaihy, being declared Blessed.