Carlo Maria Martini

Carlo Maria Martini

Archbishop Emeritus of Milan
Martini in 1992
ChurchRoman Catholic Church
Appointed29 December 1979
Installed10 February 1980
Term ended11 July 2002
PredecessorGiovanni Colombo
SuccessorDionigi Tettamanzi
Other postsCardinal-Priest of Santa Cecilia in Trastevere (1983-2012)
Ordination13 July 1952
by Maurilio Fossati
Consecration6 January 1980
by Pope John Paul II
Created cardinal2 February 1983
by Pope John Paul II
Personal details
Birth nameCarlo Maria Martini
Born(1927-02-15)15 February 1927
Orbassano, Kingdom of Italy
Died31 August 2012(2012-08-31) (aged 85)
Gallarate, Italy
BuriedCathedral of Milan, Italy
ParentsLeonardo Martini
Olga Maggia
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Alma mater
MottoPro veritate adversa diligere
("For the love of truth, dare to choose adverse situations")
SignatureCarlo Maria Martini's signature
Coat of armsCarlo Maria Martini's coat of arms

Carlo Maria Martini SJ (15 February 1927 – 31 August 2012) was an Italian Jesuit and cardinal of the Catholic Church. He was Archbishop of Milan from 1980 to 2002 and was elevated to the cardinalate in 1983. A towering intellectual figure of the Roman Catholic Church, Martini was the liberal contender for the Papacy in the 2005 conclave, following the death of Pope John Paul II. According to highly placed Vatican sources, Martini received more votes in the first round than Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, the conservative candidate: 40 to 38. Ratzinger ended up with more votes in subsequent rounds and was elected Pope Benedict XVI.

Martini entered the Society of Jesus in 1944 and was ordained a priest in 1952. His appointment as Archbishop of Milan in 1980 was an unusual circumstance, as Jesuits are not traditionally named bishops.[1] He was on the liberal wing of the church hierarchy. Suffering from a rare form of Parkinson's Disease, he retired as archbishop in 2002 and moved to the Pontifical Institute in Jerusalem. He died at the Jesuit Aloisianum College in Gallarate near Milan.

Hours after his death, the Italian daily Corriere della Sera printed his final interview, in which he described the church as "200 years out of date." "Our culture has aged, our churches are big and empty and the church bureaucracy rises up. The Church must admit its mistakes and begin a radical change, starting from the Pope and the bishops. The pedophilia scandals oblige us to take a journey of transformation."[2][3][4]

Early life and education

Carlo Maria Martini was born 15 February 1927 in Orbassano in the Province of Turin, Piedmont, to Leonardo, an engineer, and Olga (née Maggia) Martini. He was baptised on the following 22 February. He was educated at Istituto Sociale, a school run by Jesuits in Turin. He entered the Society of Jesus on 25 September 1944 and was ordained to the priesthood by Cardinal Maurilio Fossati on 13 July 1952.[5] Martini completed his studies in philosophy at the Jesuits' House of Studies in Gallarate, in the province of Milan, and theology at the faculty of theology in Chieri.

In 1958, Martini was awarded his doctorate in fundamental theology from the Pontifical Gregorian University, with a thesis exploring the problems of the Resurrection accounts. After some years of teaching at the faculty of Chieri, he returned to Rome and earned another doctorate in Scripture at the Pontifical Biblical Institute, graduating summa cum laude, with a thesis on a group of codices of the Gospel of Luke.

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