Cardinal Aramburu Remembered Fondly by Pope

Recalls Zeal and Prudence of Argentine Prelate

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VATICAN CITY, NOV. 21, 2004 ( John Paul II remembered the late Argentine Cardinal Juan Carlos Aramburu for his «long life of total dedication to God and in service to the Church.»

The 92-year-old cardinal suffered a fatal heart attack Thursday in his private residence in Buenos Aires. He was with his private secretary, Monsignor Miguel Ángel Irigoyen, who administered the sacrament of the anointing of the sick.

The Pope, in a telegram sent to Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, archbishop of Buenos Aires, said: «Deeply saddened upon learning the news of the death of our beloved Cardinal Juan Carlos Aramburu, archbishop emeritus of Buenos Aires, after a long life of total dedication to God and in service to the Church, living with sobriety and distinguishing himself by prudence and integrity, I wish to express my condolences to you, the auxiliary bishops, clergy, religious communities and the lay people of this archdiocese.»

«I join you in commending to the mercy of the heavenly Father this zealous pastor who with such pastoral charity served his people and the Church,» the Holy Father wrote.

He added: «In these moments of pain, when the ecclesial community of Buenos Aires and so many Argentine faithful mourn their beloved pastor, and recalling his participation in the Second Vatican Council, his service to the universal Church, and the welcome he showed me during my pastoral trip to Argentina in 1987, I am happy to impart with affection the comforting apostolic blessing as a sign of hope in the victory of the risen Lord.»

Born in the Argentine province of Cordoba, Juan Carlos Aramburu was named archbishop of Buenos Aires and primate of the country in April 1975. He was elevated to cardinal by Pope Paul VI in May 1976.

On Feb. 11, 1987, he presented his resignation as archbishop of Buenos Aires, as he had reached the age established by the canonical norm, but John Paul II accepted it only three years later.

With Cardinal Aramburu’s death, there are now 186 cardinals, including 122 electors under age 80 who could vote in a conclave for a new pope.

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