DAILY CATHOLIC    MONDAY     February 22, 1999     vol. 10, no. 36


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      This new feature that we introduce today will spotlight each member of the Conclave. We find this necessary as our dear Sovereign Pontiff Pope John Paul II grows older, clinging to hope, as we join him, of seeing the light of the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart with the dawn of the new millennium - the Jubilee Year 2000. How much longer this 264th successor of Peter has left on this earth only God knows for sure, but His Divine Mercy is evident in allowing him to be with us this long for he truly is a saint for our times, truly Christ's Vicar on earth in these waning days before the glorious Reign of the Sacred Heart, the Time of Peace, the Era of the Eucharistic Presence, the New Pentecost, the Second Advent, the Age of the Holy Spirit. What 1999 will bring we have no idea, nor does anyone else, but with John Paul II at the helm, we feel much more secure in knowing God's Will will be done. Nevertheless, we want to preview the future Pope whether that be soon or much, much later, for no one lives forever and eventually one of those prelates will be selected as the 265th successor of Peter. This will give the reader a better insight into the man whom the Holy Spirit will move the conclave to choose. Thus we bring the reader vignettes on each cardinal in alphabetical order gleaned from the Catholic Almanac, Inside the Vatican and other sources.

22.   Cardinal Dario Hoyos Castrillon

          One of the oldest of the newest cardinals, Colombia's 70 year-old Cardinal Dario Castrillon Hoyos (note many Spanish surnames are juxtaposed) is the Prefect for the Congregation for the Clergy. Born in Medellin, Columbia on July 4, 1929, he was ordained to the priesthood on October 26, 1952 whereafter he served as an associate pastor in two parishes while directing the diocesan Cursillo Movement in Medellin as well as serving as a delegate for Catholic Action. He was assigned to teach Canon Law at the Free Civil University in Columbia and ad served as the General Secretary of the Colombian Bishops' Conference. On June 2, 1971 Pope Paul VI chose him to be ordained Bishop as co-adjutor of Pereira and elevated to Bishop of Pereira where he served faithfully from 1976 to 1992. From 1983 to 1987 he was the General Secretary of the Latin American Episcopal Conference (CELAM), being promoted to President of that same body of Bishops for the next four years until 1991. The next year he was named Archbishop of Bucaramanga until 1996 when Pope John Paul II called him to Rome to join the Curia as Pro-Prefect for the Congregation for the Clergy. Two years later he was among the 23 named in the February 21, 1998 Consistory last year in which he received his red-hat as a cardinal-deacon with the titular church of the Holy Name of Mary on the Forum Traiani and the appointment as President of the Congregation for the Clergy.

          Besides heading the Congregation for the Clergy, Cardinal Castrillon also holds curial membership in the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples and the Congregation for Catholic Education, as well as the Pontifical Council for Social Communications. As President of the Congregation for the Clergy, he oversees the life, discipline, rights and duties of the clergy, assuring compliance in the preaching of the Word, catechetics and the norms for religious education of both children and adults as well as the preservation and administration of temporal goods of the Church. He also is responsible for the International Council for Catechetics which Pope Paul VI added in 1973 and the Institute John Paul II established in 1992 through his Apostolic Exhortation Pastores Dabo Vobis - the Institute "Sacrum Ministerium" which deals with the permanent formation of the clergy. He governs a staff of twenty one persons, plus forty-five members and fifty-five consultors.

          The Congregation for the Clergy was first established as a Curial Office on August 2, 1564 by Pope Pius IV with his Apostolic Constitution Alias Nos. It was first called the Congregation of the Cardinals Interp;reters of the Council of Trent. With further tinkering by Pope Gregory XIII and then Pope Sixtus V it was renamed the Congregation of the Council. It remained that until Paul VI titled it with its current nomenclature and redefined its responsibilities and then, on June 28, 1988, the Holy Father pronounced the additional assignments to be carried out by this Congregation. Because of his age and limited curial experience, it is doubtful this Colombian cardinal would seriously be considered papal material in the event of an unforeseen election in the near future.

February 22, 1999       volume 10, no. 36


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