Pope Francis on May 18, 2018, offered his condolences upon the death of Cardinal Dario Castrillon Hoyos, Prefect Emeritus of the Congregation for the Clergy, who died the same day. The Pope cited “his generous service to the Church, especially his precious service given to the Holy See”. The Holy Father’s words came in a telegram sent to the Dean of the College of Cardinals, Cardinal Angelo Sodano.
Here is a ZENIT translation of the telegram
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H.E. Lord Cardinal Angelo Sodano
Dean of the College of Cardinal
I learnt the news of the demise of dear Cardinal Dario Castrillon Hoyos, and I wish to express my sentiments of condolence to the College of Cardinals, to the relatives and to those who esteemed the late Cardinal, remembering with a grateful spirit his generous service to the Church, especially his precious service given to the Holy See, particularly as Prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy and President of the Ecclesia Dei Pontifical Commission, and I raise fervent intercessory prayers to the Lord so that, through the intercession of the Virgin Mary, He will receive him in eternal joy and peace, and I send the Apostolic Blessing to all those who share the grief over the death of such a meritorious servant of the Gospel.
© Libreria Editrice Vatican[Original text: Italian] [ZENIT’s translation by Virginia m. Forrester]
Biography, Vatican News
Cardinal Darío Castrillón Hoyos was born in Medellín, Colombia, on July 4, 1929. At an early age, he entered the minor seminary of the diocese of Santa Fe de Antioquia, then proceeded to Santa Rosa de Osos where he continued his formation.
He was sent to Europe to complete his studies and received a doctorate in Canon Law at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, and another in Sociology from the University of Leuven in Belgium. On October 26, 1952, he was ordained a priest in the Church of the Twelve Apostles in Rome. Following his ordination, he returned to Colombia where he served as priest vicar and parish priest.
At the age of 41, on June 2, 1971, Pope Paul VI appointed Castrillón Hoyos as coadjutor bishop of Pereira with right of succession. He served as the chief shepherd of the diocese for 21 years.
In 1983 he took up the role of General Secretary of CELAM (Latin American Episcopal Conference); four years later, in 1987, he assumed the presidency of that body, a position he held until 1991.
In 1992 he was named Archbishop of Bucaramanga, where he served as ordinary until 1996 when Pope Saint John Paul II appointed him Prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy in Rome. He was created Cardinal by the same pope in 1998. In 2000, he was appointed President of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei.
Pope Benedict XVI accepted his resignation in 2009 when the Cardinal turned 80. From then on he continued to work as a consultant for different dicasteries and prefectures of the Holy See and continued to exercise his pastoral ministry.
Before his death, Cardinal Castrillón Hoyos expressed the desire to be buried in the Metropolitan Cathedral of Medellín, his native city, that his remains might rest among the people of his country awaiting the resurrection of the dead.