Archbishop Emeritus of Philadelphia
|Appointed||July 15, 2003|
|Installed||October 7, 2003|
|Term ended||July 19, 2011|
|Other posts||Cardinal-Priest of S. Prisca|
Episcopal Liaison to CMSWR
|Ordination||April 25, 1961|
by James Francis McIntyre
|Consecration||September 14, 1985|
by John Paul II, Eduardo Martínez Somalo, and Achille Silvestrini
|Created cardinal||October 21, 2003|
by John Paul II
|Birth name||Justin Francis Rigali|
|Born||April 19, 1935|
Los Angeles, California, US
|Motto||Verbum caro factum est|
(The Word Became Flesh)
Justin Francis Rigali
|Reference style||His Eminence|
|Spoken style||Your Eminence|
Justin Francis Rigali (born April 19, 1935) is an American cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church. He was the eighth Archbishop of Philadelphia, having previously served as Archbishop of St. Louis from 1994 to 2003. Rigali was elevated to the cardinalate in 2003.
The youngest of seven children, Justin Rigali was born in Los Angeles, California, to Henry Alphonsus and Frances Irene (née White) Rigali. Two of his siblings entered the religious life as well; his sister Charlotte joined the Sisters of St. Joseph, and his brother Norbert the Jesuits. Rigali attended Holy Cross School before entering the preparatory seminary in Hancock Park in 1949. He studied philosophy and theology at Los Angeles College, Our Lady Queen of Angels Seminary in San Fernando and St. John's Seminary in Camarillo. He was ordained to the priesthood by James Francis Cardinal McIntyre on April 25, 1961, and then did pastoral work in Los Angeles and Downey.
In 1961, Rigali earned a Bachelor of Sacred Theology degree from the Catholic University of America, where he is now a member of the Board of Trustees. In October of that year, he entered the graduate division of the Pontifical North American College in Rome, later obtaining a doctorate in canon law from the Pontifical Gregorian University in 1964. He was also an assistant during the first two sessions (1962-1963) of the Second Vatican Council. Rigali briefly returned to the United States in the summer of 1964, during which time he served as an associate pastor in Pomona. Returning to Rome, he then studied at the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy from 1964 to 1966 in preparation for his diplomatic work for the Vatican.
Rigali began his service in the English section of the Secretariat of State on November 25, 1964. From September 1966 to February 1970, he was secretary of the Apostolic Nunciature to Madagascar, which also served as the apostolic delegation for the islands of Réunion and Mauritius in the Indian Ocean. He was named a Papal Chamberlain on July 11, 1967. On February 11, 1970, Rigali became director of the English section of the Secretariat of State and the English translator to Pope Paul VI, whom Rigali subsequently accompanied on several international trips.
During his service at the Secretariat of State, Rigali was also a chaplain at a Carmelite monastery and a professor at his alma mater of the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy. He accompanied Pope John Paul II on a number of international pastoral visits, including his first two journeys to the United States in 1979 (which included a trip to Rigali's future see of Philadelphia) and 1987. He was made a Prelate of Honor of His Holiness on April 19, 1980, and a magistral chaplain in the Order of the Knights of Malta on October 25, 1984.
Ordination history of
On June 8, 1985, Rigali was appointed President of the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy and Titular Archbishop of Volsinium by Pope John Paul II. He received his episcopal consecration on the following September 14 from John Paul, with Cardinals Eduardo Martínez Somalo and Achille Silvestrini as co-consecrators, in the cathedral of Albano. He selected as his episcopal motto: Verbum Caro Factum Est, meaning, "The Word Became Flesh" (John 1:14). He became a member of the Order of the Holy Sepulchre on October 13, 1986.
From 1985 to 1990, in addition to his role of president of the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy, Rigali held a number of positions within the Roman Curia, serving in the Secretariat of State, Council for the Public Affairs of the Church, Congregation for Bishops, and Pontifical Council for the Laity. He was named Secretary of the Congregation for Bishops by John Paul II on December 21, 1989; as Secretary, he served as the second-highest official of that dicastery. Rigali was later made Secretary of the College of Cardinals by John Paul II on January 2, 1990, and served on the Permanent Interdicasterial Commission, Pontifical Commission for Latin America, and Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. During the same time, he was also engaged in pastoral service to a number of parishes and seminaries in Rome.
On January 25, 1994, Pope John Paul II named Rigali the seventh Archbishop of St. Louis, Missouri. Succeeding Archbishop John L. May, he was formally installed by Bernardin Cardinal Gantin, then the Prefect of the Sacred Congregation for Bishops, on March 15 of that same year. The newly installed archbishop became a member of the Knights of Columbus on November 7, 1994. During his tenure at St. Louis, known as the "Rome of the West", Archbishop Rigali showed a great interest in schools, visiting every high school in the archdiocese. However, Rigali opposed collective bargaining by teachers, and opposed any efforts they made to organize. Rigali was widely credited as an able administrator and effective fundraiser, although his popularity dimmed as his tenure continued.
In January 1999, Rigali hosted the pastoral visit of John Paul to St. Louis, the only such papal visit (not counting the even briefer stopovers John Paul made in Alaska on trips to other countries) to a single diocese in the United States during the pontificate. John Paul reportedly decided to be hosted by the Archdiocese of St. Louis because of his longtime close friendship with Rigali, from Rigali's days working under him in Rome as a bishop. Rigali was widely admired by many in the church.
During his tenure as Archbishop of St. Louis, Rigali was instrumental in restoring the archdiocese's orthodoxy after the years of Archbishop John L. May. Rigali improved the financial situation of the archdiocese, increasing endowments and overseeing successful capital campaigns. Due to his astute financial leadership, the archdiocese was able forgive the debts owed by the archdiocese's parishes to the archdiocese itself. During his tenure, the number of priestly vocations dramatically increased and a new emphasis was placed on the proper formation of seminarians. Rigali launched an episcopal visitation of the Aquinas Institute of Theology, a Dominican institution of higher education that was well known for fostering dissent from orthodox Church teaching. Rigali instituted an archdiocesan-wide program of Eucharistic Adoration, one in which each parish in the archdiocese would participate. That the Archdiocese of St. Louis maintains a vibrant life of faith and a strong number of young men studying for the priesthood is testament to the legacy of Rigali.
Rigali was later appointed the eighth Archbishop of Philadelphia by Pope John Paul II toward the end of his pontificate on July 15, 2003, replacing the retiring Anthony Bevilacqua. Prior to Rigali's installation in Philadelphia on October 7, 2003, it was announced on September 28 that he would be elevated to the College of Cardinals, a customary privilege for the archbishops of Philadelphia. Rigali was created Cardinal-Priest of Santa Prisca in the consistory of October 21, 2003.
Rigali was the only American cardinal to serve as a concelebrant at the 2005 funeral mass for John Paul II. He was also one of the cardinal electors who participated in the ensuing papal conclave, which selected Pope Benedict XVI, as well as the following conclave, which selected Pope Francis. Rigali remained eligible to vote in conclaves until he reached 80 on April 19, 2015.
In September 2007, the cardinal was named by Benedict as a member of the Congregation for Bishops, the curia department that puts forward to the Pope the names of those considered to be appropriate choices to be appointed as bishops.
On August 31, 2009, Rigali became the Apostolic Administrator (sede vacante) to the Diocese of Scranton following the Pope's acceptance of the resignations of Bishop Joseph Martino and Bishop John Dougherty, Auxiliary Bishop of Scranton. Rigali served eight months as the Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Scranton. His delegate was Joseph Bambera, who became the tenth Bishop of Scranton on April 26, 2010, bringing Rigali's administration of Scranton to an end.
On June 16, 2011, Rigali was appointed the Pope's special envoy to the celebrations at Prachatice in the Czech Republic for the 200th anniversary of the birth of Saint John Neumann, the fourth Bishop of Philadelphia and thus Rigali's predecessor. Neumann, the second American citizen to be canonized (after Frances Xavier Cabrini), was born in Prachatice, came to the United States and was ordained there in 1836, and in 1848 became a naturalized United States citizen.
On July 19, 2011, Pope Benedict named Denver Archbishop Charles J. Chaput to succeed Rigali in Philadelphia. "In Philadelphia, a Changing of the Guard in the Shadow of Scandal" was the headline in The New York Times, citing "the cloud that hangs over Cardinal Rigali's legacy - his mishandling of the abuse scandal." Archbishop Chaput was installed on September 8, 2011.
After the installation of Chaput in Philadelphia, Rigali retired in residence with the Diocese of Knoxville, Tennessee at the invitation of Bishop Richard Stika, who had been vicar general and chancellor of the Archdiocese of St. Louis when Rigali was archbishop there. He has been active in the diocese during his residence there.
On 16 December 2013, when Pope Francis overhauled the membership of the Congregation for Bishops, Rigali, then 78, retired and was not reappointed.
On 16 September 2015, The Associated Press reported that "Priests, nuns and canon lawyers who advocate for clergy sex abuse victims urged Pope Francis, on the eve of his U.S. visit, to investigate the child protection records of Cardinal Justin Rigali, the former archbishop of Philadelphia, and Cardinal Raymond Burke, who led dioceses in Wisconsin and Missouri."
In June 2006, Rigali traveled to the White House along with Archbishop John J. Myers of Newark and Cardinal Seán Patrick O'Malley of Boston to attend a press conference by US President George W. Bush to support a constitutional amendment initiative in the United States Senate banning gay unions or marriages.
As chairman of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops' Pro-Life Committee, he remarked during the annual Washington, DC, pro-life rally in January 2007 that "there are reasons for rejoicing" in the pro-life cause: the growing participation by young people and a heightened awareness of the issue's intense and growing moral sensitivity among them, who will eventually have a contribution to make to societal issues. He has publicly endorsed the Pregnant Women Support Act, which he praised for offering "an authentic common ground" that "will proved many kinds of life-affirming support for pregnant women and their unborn children."
He said that the decision by the University of Notre Dame to have US President Barack Obama deliver the commencement speech at its graduation ceremony and receive an honorary degree was "most unfortunate" and the reasoning behind it "evades common sense."
In November 2009, Rigali, with several other Roman Catholic prelates, signed an ecumenical statement known as the Manhattan Declaration, which stated:
Because the sanctity of human life, the dignity of marriage as a union of husband and wife and the freedom of conscience and religion are foundational principles of justice and the common good, we are compelled by our Christian faith to speak and act in their defense. In this declaration we affirm: (1) the profound, inherent, and equal dignity of every human being as a creature fashioned in the very image of God, possessing inherent rights of equal dignity and life; (2) marriage as a conjugal union of man and woman, ordained by God from the creation, and historically understood by believers and non-believers alike, to be the most basic institution in society and; (3) religious liberty, which is grounded in the character of God, the example of Christ, and the inherent freedom and dignity of human beings created in the divine image ...
We are Christians who have joined together across historic lines of ecclesial differences to affirm our right--and, more importantly, to embrace our obligation--to speak and act in defense of these truths. We pledge to each other, and to our fellow believers, that no power on earth, be it cultural or political, will intimidate us into silence or acquiescence ...
Through the centuries, Christianity has taught that civil disobedience is not only permitted, but sometimes required. There is no more eloquent defense of the rights and duties of religious conscience than the one offered by Martin Luther King, Jr., in his Letter from a Birmingham Jail. Writing from an explicitly Christian perspective, and citing Christian writers such as Augustine [of Hippo] and [Thomas] Aquinas, King taught that just laws elevate and ennoble human beings because they are rooted in the moral law whose ultimate source is God Himself.
In April 2009, he denounced the ordination ceremony of two women[clarification needed] in Roxborough, calling it a "pseudo-ordination" that "denigrates the truth entrusted to the Church by Christ himself."
|Catholic Church titles|
Alfons Maria Stickler
|-- TITULAR --
Archbishop of Volsinium
Justo Mullor García
| President of Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy
Giovanni Battista Re
| Secretary for the Congregation for Bishops
Jorge María Mejía
John L. May
| Archbishop of Saint Louis
Raymond Leo Burke
| Archbishop of Philadelphia
Alfonso López Trujillo
| Cardinal-Priest of Santa Prisca