Cardinal Ratzinger's Right-Hand Man Is Named Archbishop of Genoa

Tarcisio Bertone Succeeds Dionigi Tettamanzi

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VATICAN CITY, DEC. 10, 2002 ( John Paul II appointed Archbishop Tarcisio Bertone, secretary of the Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, as archbishop of Genoa.

Archbishop Bertone is replacing Cardinal Dionigi Tettamanzi, who was appointed archbishop of another major Italian diocese, Milan, last July.

The new archbishop of Genoa, 68, was Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger’s right hand at Doctrine of the Faith since June 13, 1995. He was given by John Paul II the responsibility of publishing the third part of the Fatima «secret» (see ZENIT archives of June 26, 2000).

Born in Romano Canavese, in the province of Turin, on Dec. 1, 1934, Tarcisio Bertone soon discovered his Salesian vocation, making his first religious profession on Dec. 3, 1950. He was ordained a priest July 1, 1960.

After receiving a doctorate in canon law from the Salesian University, he was given the chair of special moral theology there in 1967. In 1976 he headed the school of canon law, where he taught ecclesiastical public law until 1991.

He collaborated in the last phase of the revision of the Code of Canon Law, which was promulgated in 1983, and directed the working group that translated it into Italian.

On June 1, 1989, he was elected chancellor of the Pontifical Salesian University.

John Paul II appointed him archbishop of Vercelli in 1991. In 1993, the Italian bishops’ conference elected him president of the Justice and Peace Commission, where he promoted initiatives for education in legality, justice and morality.

When his appointment was made public by the Vatican Press Office today, the first words Archbishop Bertone said were, «Thy will be done.»

Addressing, in particular, «those who say they are Christians» in Genoa, Archbishop Bertone mentioned his episcopal motto: «Fidem custodire — concordiam servare» (Safeguard the faith; preserve concord).

«It is not just a matter of resisting in the faith, or of preserving the faith in good people, but rather of offering the criteria of faith as the key to resolve the problems of our society,» he exhorted them.

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