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Pope mourns death of Portuguese cardinal

March 14, 2014 - Pope Francis has expressed his sadness over the death of Portuguese Cardinal José da Cruz Policarpo, retired Patriarch of Lisbon who passed away on Wednesday at the age of 78. In a condolence message to Patriarch José Manuel Macário Do Nascimento Clemente of Lisbon, the Pope recalled the work of the deceased Patriarch in the various offices of the Holy See, and his own meetings with the Patriarch, whom he described as a Pastor who was passionate in his search for the truth. “He was solicitous in putting the gifts received from the Lord at the service of the people of God and of his brother bishops,” the Pope said. He thanked God for the generosity and zeal with which the Patriarch exercised his ministry throughout his life, noting especially his service at the Portuguese Catholic University.

José da Cruz was made cardinal in 2001 by Pope John Paul II. With his death the number of cardinals in the world now stands at 217, of whom 120 are below 80 years of age, and hence are eligible to vote for a new pope in a conclave.


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