DAILY CATHOLIC    MONDAY     November 22, 1999     vol. 10, no. 221


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      Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday we spotlight each member of the Conclave in alphabetical order. 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, The Official Catholic Directory, Inside the Vatican and other sources.

126.   Cardinal Adrianus Johannes Simonis

        The Archbishop of Utrecht, one of the oldest sees in Europe, has been Cardinal Adrianus Johannes Simonis since 1983. He was born on November 26, 1931 in the village of Lisse, Holland. After studies for the priesthood in the Diocese of Rotterdam, he was ordained a priest on June 15, 1957. Following two years of pastoral work, he was assigned to Rome where he undertook Biblical Exegesis studies until 1966, then taught in various institutions in Holland until he was slected to be shepherd of his diocese on December 29, 1970 by Pope Paul VI. He was consecrated and installed on March 20, 1971 where he remained until Pope John Paul II named him Coadjutor Archbishop of Utrecht on June 27, 1983. He officially became the Archbishop of Utrecht on December 3, 1983. He was also elected president of the Dutch Bishops' Conference.

        Two years later during the Consistory of May 25, 1985 the Holy Father bestowed on him the red-hat and the titular church of St. Clement. He was also assigned curial membership in the Congregation for the Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life and the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. Becoming only the seventh cardinal in the long history of Holland, he also spearheaded the reception committee for John Paul II's visit to Holland that same year amid vociferous opposition by dissidents that have greatly depleted the once proud Church in Holland. At the age of 68, Cardinal Simonis resides at Aartsbisdom, P.B. 14019, 3508 SB Utrecht in the Netherlands where he has for the past sixteen years. Even though Pope Hadrian VI was from Utrecht and the last foreign Pontiff until John Paul II was elected in 1978, there is no chance Simonis would even be considered for the papacy in the future because of his limited knowledge of international experience in the universal Church.

November 22, 1999       volume 10, no. 221


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