Successors to 3 Brazilian Cardinals Named

Resignations for Reasons of Age

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Share this Entry

VATICAN CITY, JAN. 30, 2004 ( The Church hierarchy in the biggest Catholic country underwent a major change when John Paul II accepted the resignation of three Brazilian cardinals and appointed their successors.

All three cardinals stepped aside for reasons of age.

The Pope this week accepted the resignation of Cardinal Aloísio Lorscheider, the 79-year-old archbishop of Aparecida, and appointed Auxiliary Bishop Raymundo Damasceno Assis of Brasilia to succeed him.

Raymundo Assis, born in 1937 in the state of Minas Gerais, studied theology at the Gregorian University in Rome, and specialized in catechesis at the Munich Catechetical Institute in Germany. Ordained a priest in 1968 by the Archdiocese of Brasilia, he became auxiliary bishop of the capital in 1986.

He was secretary-general of the Latin American bishops’ council (CELAM) from 1991-1995 and secretary-general of the Brazilian bishops’ conference from 1995-1998 and from 1999-2003.

Cardinal Serafim Fernandes de Araújo, also 79, stepped down as archbishop of Belo Horizonte. He is being succeeded by Auxiliary Bishop Walmor Oliveira de Azevedo of San Salvador da Bahia.

Born in the state of Bahia in 1954, Walmor Oliveira de Azevedo was ordained a priest in 1977 and later obtained licentiates from the Pontifical Biblical Institute and the Gregorian University.

Among other duties, he has been rector of the Juiz de Fora Seminary and professor of the pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro (1991-1994). Since 1998, he has been auxiliary bishop of San Salvador da Bahia. Last May he was named president of the Brazilian bishops’ Commission for the Doctrine of the Faith.

The Pope also accepted the resignation of Cardinal José Freire Falcão, 78, as archbishop of Brasilia. He is being succeeded by Archbishop Joao Braz de Aviz of Maringa.

Born in Mafra, Santa Caterina, in 1947, Joao Braz de Aviz was ordained in 1972, after studying theology at the Gregorian in Rome. From 1989 to 1992, he studied at the Lateran University, obtaining a licentiate in dogmatic theology.

After being rector of the Major Seminary of Londrina (1986-1988), and a professor at the Paul VI Institute of Londrina (1991-1994), he was named auxiliary bishop of Vitoria in 1994. In 1998 he was appointed bishop of Ponta Grossa, and since July 17, 2002, has been archbishop of Maringa.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Share this Entry


Support ZENIT

If you liked this article, support ZENIT now with a donation