Vatican – Next cardinal López Romero, SDB: "My highest title and diploma... to be 'son of God'"

02 September 2019

(ANS - Vatican City) - On the sidelines of yesterday's Angelus, 1 September, Pope Francis announced a Consistory for the creation of 10 new Cardinals. Among them, the Pontiff also appointed Salesian Cristóbal López Romero, archbishop of Rabat, Morocco. His comment as regards the appointment: "I repeat what I already explained when I was appointed bishop: my highest title and diploma is to be 'son of God', and I obtained it through baptism. They are already at the top (like most of you); I cannot go higher or be promoted, because one cannot be more than a child of God."

Mons. López Romero was born 19 May 1952 in Vélez-Rubio, Spain; he carried out his novitiate in Godelleta, professed his first vows on 16 August 1968, followed by solemn vows on 2 August 1974, after which he was ordained a priest on 19 May 1979.

He served the Salesian Congregation in multiple ways and in various geographical areas: following ordination he took care of the pastoral ministry with the marginalized in Barcelona; he was Director of the Salesian Bulletin of Asunción, Paraguay (1991-92); then Superior of three different Provinces: Paraguay (1994-2000), Bolivia (2011-2014), and Spain-Mary Help of Christians (2014-2017). And in between, from 2003 to 2011, he also gained the experience of Director of the Community, head of the pastoral parish and school ministry in the vocational training center in Kénitra, Morocco. Precisely in virtue of this service, and of the good relations he developed with the Christian and Muslim religious leaders present in Morocco, on 29 December 2017, Pope Francis appointed him Archbishop of Rabat. In this capacity, he accompanied the Holy Father throughout his apostolic journey to Morocco this past March.

On the day of his appointment, in which the liturgy recalled "The greater you become, the more humble you should be." (Sir 3, 18), Msgr. López Romero wrote on his Facebook page: 

“Dear friends ... I would have wanted to answer all the messages I received ... But I give up: they are so many! ... I would like every greeting to become a prayer for the Pope, for the Church, for this diocese of Rabat and for my person. I thank Pope Francis for the deference he has shown me and I intend to continue to serve the Church by helping her with everything she needs. (...)

I reiterate what I already explained when I was appointed Bishop: my title and diploma of the highest category is that of being "son of God", and I obtained it in Baptism. I am at the top (like most of you); I cannot ascend or be promoted, since more than the son of God one cannot be.

Being bishop, priest, cardinal, Pope ...  is nothing but a concrete service rendered to the Church and in the Church ... But it does not put you above anyone. (...)

The responsibility received overflows me and overcomes me, but I am counting on the One who began His work in me to bring it a fine end.

Let Your kingdom come!”


ANS - “Agenzia iNfo Salesiana” is a on-line almost daily publication, the communication agency of the Salesian Congregation enrolled in the Press Register of the Tibunal of Rome as n 153/2007.

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