Slovakian Cardinal Ján Chryzostom Korec, S.J. Died Oct. 24, 2015; Electors = 118, College of Cardinals = 218

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by Anura Guruge


korec_99063Name: Ján Chryzostom Korec, S.J.

Nationality: Slovakian

Date of Birth: 22 Jan. 1924 (91 years old at passing)

Main post: Bishop emeritus of Nitra

Created: 28 June 1991

Last death of a cardinal was on August 17, 2015 — 68 days ago.


Born, Bošany, Czechoslovakia


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Cardinal Antonio Cañizares Llovera, ‘Little Ratzinger’, Hurt In Car Crash, In Valencia, Day Before Mass With Pope Francis.

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by Anura Guruge


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Click to access ‘New York Daily News’ original.

Cardinal Loris Francesco Capovilla Turns 100, 2 Years From Becoming The Oldest (Known) Cardinal.

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by Anura Guruge


Loris Francesco Capovilla

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Click to ENLARGE and read here. The Wikipedia entry for the cardinal. To access original use this link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Loris_Francesco_Capovilla

His greatest (and deserved) claim to fame, faithful, ever present private secretary to  Angelo Giuseppe Roncalli (later Pope John XXIII) from 1958 to the pope’s death in 1963 (and he was at the bedside).

Here seen walking behind the pope, in 1958, at the Vatican, early into the papacy. His appointment as secretary was one of the new pope’s first acts.

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Two extracts relating to Cardinal Capovilla from my “Pope John XXIII: 101 Facts & Trivia” book.

Click to ENLARGE and read here.
Capovillabook1— — — — — — —
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Cardinal Capovilla has a commanding lead as the oldest living cardinal as clearly illustrated in my new Excel spreadsheet for the College. Click to ENLARGE.
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As far as we know, based on current documentation, the OLDEST cardinal was Portuguese Dom Jorge da Costa [1406 to Sept. 18, 1508]. He is said to have been 102 when he died though this exact birthdate is not known! He, once the Archbishop of Lisbon (and then of Braga), was created in 1476 — when he would have been 70.

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We have had a cardinal who lived to be 101 in recent times. He was Italian, Corrado Bafile (4 July 1903 – 3 February 2005). Unlike with da Costa we know his exact birthdate.

So he was 101 years, 6 months and 4 weeks old when he died. So Cardinal Capovilla needs to live for another 1.5 years to catch up with him.

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Cardinal Bafile, nuncio to Germany, in 1954 with the Chancellor.

Cardinal Deaths In 2015.

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by Anura Guruge


9 cardinals have died so far in 2015 — up to October 7, 2015.

Here are the pertinent details. Click to ENLARGE.

2015cdeathsOct7

The average duration between deaths have been 23.5 days. The typical average for this is 44.6 days. The 4 deaths in April was atypical. That 44% belonged to a religious order is also slightly out of the norm.

10 cardinals died in both 2014 & 2013, while the number was 9 for both 2012 & 2011. It was 6 in 2010. So the 2015 number is close to to ‘high water mark’.

Keeping track of cardinal deaths is in no way morbid. It is something one has to do IF one is to keep tabs on the College of Cardinals. Only three things alter the fundamental parameters of the College: creations, 80-year aging outs and deaths.

I used to maintain this type of chart — until I stopped doing so once Pope Francis was elected in 2013. Click to ENLARGE. I plan to go back to doing this.

In 2011 I did a fair amount of research and analysis into cardinal deaths. Here are some examples. Go to “Popes and Papacy” and do a search on “cardinal deaths” for more. Here are some of the charts from those posts. Click to ENLARGE. My goal is to resurrect and update these charts. The good news is that I have the Excel spreadsheet.



World Has Not Seen A Pope Younger Than 70 Since May 1990.

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by Anura Guruge


Original ‘Minimum Age To Be Pope’ post (from 2009)


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John Paul II on May 16, 1990 — 2 days ahead of his 70th birthday.

May 18, 1990, John Paul II turned 70.

We have not seen a pope younger than 70 since then. That is 25 years. A whole generation. In the scheme of things we have been here before, e.g., Pius IX’s reign.

But it is interesting that there is a resurgence of interest in a young pope. That might not happen anytime soon. The trend seems to be with electing cardinals who are over 75.

Food for thought.


Barring Deaths NO Changes To The College OF Cardinals In The Next 5 Months.

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The distribution of the birthdays of the cardinals, by and large, is arbitrary — though there have (and will be) a few instances where a prelate was created, when he was, because his birthdate ‘fitted in’ relative to the ’80-year’ cutoff. We just had two cardinals, Abril y CastellóDe Paolis, turn 80 within the space of two days. But prior to that the last cardinal to age out was 5 months earlier.

And we are going to see that again. The next cardinal to age out will be US Cardinal Roger Michael Mahony, on February 27, 2016. So that is the next scheduled change to the College — barring deaths.


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Click to ENLARGE and read. From my new Excel spreadsheet.

Spanish Cardinal Santos Abril y Castelló Turns 80; Electors = 118, College of Cardinals = 219

.by Anura Guruge


abrilycastelloName: Santos Abril y Castelló

Nationality: Spanish

Date of Birth: 21 Sep. 1935

Main post: Apostolic Nuncio

Created: 18 Feb 2912


Born: Alfambra, Spain

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by Anura Guruge
Papal Historian & Author


A Web site by papal historian Anura Guruge on Papal Elections

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