Cardinal Roger Etchegaray, who oversaw the Jubilee Year 2000, dies at 96

Vatican City, Sep 4, 2019 / 03:00 pm (CNA).- French Cardinal Roger Etchegaray, a frequent collaborator of Pope St. John Paul II, has died at 96.

Etchagaray, from the French Basque region, was born in Espelette on September 25, 1922.

He attended the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, obtaining licentiate in theology and a doctorate of canon law.

He was ordained a priest in 1947 and incardinated in the Diocese of Bayonne.

In 1961 he began working in the French bishops’ conference, and  from 1966 to 1970 was its  general secretary.

In 1969, Pope Paul VI appointed him an auxiliary bishop in the Archdiocese of Paris.

On Dec. 22, 1970 he became the Archbishop of Marseille. In 1975 he was elected president of the French episcopal conference.

In 1979, Pope St. John Paul II named him a cardinal.

In April 1984 Pope John Paul II named him the president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace  and the president of the pontifical council Cor Unum, he retained this second post until 1995.

In 1994 he was taken with overseeing the Church’s observance of the Great Jubilee of the Year 2000.

He served often as de facto “ambassador” of John Paul II in delicate diplomatic missions: in 2003 he worked on behalf of the pope to avoid the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq that began the Second Gulf War.

On April 30, 2005, Benedict XVI approved his election as Vice Dean of the College of Cardinals.

In January 2017, he left the Vatican to return to his native Diocese of Bayonne.

After the death of Cardinal Pimiento Rodriguez , which occurred yesterday, he was, briefly, the oldest living cardinal.


A version of this story was first published by ACI Stampa. It has been translated and adapted by CNA.

If you value the news and views Catholic World Report provides, please consider donating to support our efforts. Your contribution will help us continue to make CWR available to all readers worldwide for free, without a subscription. Thank you for your generosity!

Click here for more information on donating to CWR. Click here to sign up for our newsletter.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

All comments posted at Catholic World Report are moderated. While vigorous debate is welcome and encouraged, please note that in the interest of maintaining a civilized and helpful level of discussion, comments containing obscene language or personal attacks—or those that are deemed by the editors to be needlessly combative or inflammatory—will not be published. Thank you.