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August 31st, 2012
09:03 PM ET

Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini, prominent Vatican figure, dies at 85

By Livia Borghese, for CNN

Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini, a prominent Vatican figure and one of the more progressive voices in the Catholic Church, died Friday at age 85, the Archdiocese of Milan announced.

Martini suffered from Parkinson's disease and died at his residence in Milan, where he had lived since 2008, when the disease forced him to leave Jerusalem, the archdiocese said.

A public viewing was scheduled for Saturday at Milan Cathedral and the funeral for Monday.

Pope Benedict XVI sent his condolences to the archbishop of Milan, Cardinal Angelo Scola, remembering his "beloved brother that served with generosity the Gospels and the Church."

The Vatican secretary of state, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, called Martini "an expert and passionate in the Holy Scripture."
Martini was born in 1927 and entered the Society of Jesus at age 17.

Pope John Paul II appointed him archbishop of Milan in 1979 and proclaimed him cardinal in 1983. In 2002, at the retirement age of 75, Martini moved to Jerusalem to dedicate himself to Biblical studies, according to his official Vatican biography.

Martini was known for his progressive position on some of the Church's most controversial issues, including priestly celibacy, the use of condoms, euthanasia and homosexuality.

Even after his retirement, Martini raised "subtle though crucial objections" to the Church's opposition to all cases of assisted fertility, distribution of condoms to AIDS victims, and so-called right-to-die cases, Time magazine reported in 2007.

He "politely challenged" the pope's strong condemnation of an Italian government proposal to legalize civil unions for homosexual partners and voiced support for the ordination of women as deacons, Time reported.
Italy's ANSA news agency said Martini was considered one of the more liberal high-ranking representatives of the Catholic Church.

Italian President Giorgio Napolitano remembered Martini's "innovative paths in the inter-religious dialogue," as well as the "enlightening and concrete suggestions" he received from the prelate in each of their many encounters, especially on social themes like immigration.

Martini was one of the "papabili," or papal contenders, at the 2005 Conclave that elected the current pope.

- CNN

Filed under: Catholic Church • Vatican

soundoff (84 Responses)
  1. tuvia

    ----

    September 6, 2012 at 9:26 pm |
  2. tuvia

    ----

    September 6, 2012 at 9:25 pm |
  3. celticspike7

    He is wise and Blessed.
    Carlo Martini would have made a great Pope.
    i wonder what he thinks of Father Benedict Groeschel ??

    September 3, 2012 at 6:12 pm |
  4. Agnostic Atheism is Healthy for Kids and Grown-Ups Too!

    It's really best for all people including children to have an agnostic approach to god, and an atheistic approach to all religion. It keeps things simple for kids, and let's them be all that they can be. They just need to be taught that some things, like all religions, are just junk that was made up by salesmen and politicians long ago; and that other things, like god, we really don't know a damn thing about.

    Atheists have strong minds, and don't run and hide their misdeeds within their religion (and by doing so, disserving society).

    So instead of praying to make-believe people, get a good cup of tea and go on and sit down and collect your damn thoughts.
    My goodness.

    mama kindless

    September 2, 2012 at 9:22 pm |
  5. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer really changes things
    Proven

    September 2, 2012 at 4:46 pm |
    • hal 9000

      I'm sorry "Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things", but you assertions regarding atheism and prayer are unfounded. I see that you repeat these unfounded statements frequently. Perhaps the following book might help you overcome this problem:

      I'm Told I Have Dementia: What You Can Do... Who You Can Turn to... by the Alzheimer's Disease Society
      .

      September 2, 2012 at 5:39 pm |
  6. Prayer is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer takes people away from actually working on real solutions to their problems.
    Prayer has been shown to have no discernible effect towards what was prayed for.
    Prayer makes you frothy like Rick Santorum. Just go to http://santorum.com to find out more.
    Prayer prevents you from getting badly needed exercise.
    Prayer makes you fat, pale, weak, and sedentary.
    Prayer wears out your clothes prematurely.
    Prayer contributes to global warming through excess CO2 emissions.
    Prayer fucks up your knees and your neck and your back.
    Prayer can cause heart attacks, especially among the elderly.
    Prayer reveals how stupid you are to the world.
    Prayer exposes your backside to pervert priests.
    Prayer makes you think doilies are exciting.
    Prayer makes you secretively flatulent and embarrassed about it.
    Prayer makes your kids avoid spending time with you.
    Prayer gives you knobbly knees.
    Prayer makes you frothy like Rick Santorum. Just google him to find out.
    Prayer dulls your senses.
    Prayer makes you post really stupid shit.
    Prayer makes you hoard cats.
    Prayer makes you smell like shitty kitty litter and leads you on to harder drugs.
    Prayer wastes time.

    September 2, 2012 at 7:49 am |
    • nope

      @the foul mouth liar
      nope

      September 2, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
  7. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer really changes things

    September 2, 2012 at 6:56 am |
    • Prayer is not healthy for children and other living things

      Prayer takes people away from actually working on real solutions to their problems.
      Prayer has been shown to have no discernible effect towards what was prayed for.
      Prayer makes you frothy like Rick Santorum. Just go to http://santorum.com to find out more.
      Prayer prevents you from getting badly needed exercise.
      Prayer makes you fat, pale, weak, and sedentary.
      Prayer wears out your clothes prematurely.
      Prayer contributes to global warming through excess CO2 emissions.
      Prayer fucks up your knees and your neck and your back.
      Prayer can cause heart attacks, especially among the elderly.
      Prayer reveals how stupid you are to the world.
      Prayer makes you think doilies are exciting.
      Prayer makes you secretively flatulent and embarrassed about it.
      Prayer makes your kids avoid spending time with you.
      Prayer gives you knobbly knees.
      Prayer makes you frothy like Rick Santorum. Just google him to find out.
      Prayer dulls your senses.
      Prayer makes you post really stupid shit.
      Prayer makes you hoard cats.
      Prayer makes you smell like shitty kitty litter and leads you on to harder drugs.
      Prayer wastes time.

      September 2, 2012 at 7:49 am |
    • nope

      @foul mouth liar
      nope

      September 2, 2012 at 2:09 pm |
    • hal 9000

      I'm sorry "Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things", but you assertions regarding atheism and prayer are unfounded. I see that you repeat these unfounded statements frequently. Perhaps the following book might help you overcome this problem:

      I'm Told I Have Dementia: What You Can Do... Who You Can Turn to... by the Alzheimer's Disease Society

      September 2, 2012 at 3:15 pm |
  8. AvdBerg

    For a better understanding of the history of the Catholic Church and the spirit it serves (Luke 9:55) we invite you to read the articles ‘The Mystery Babylon’ and ‘Popes and the Princes of This World’ listed on our website http://www.aworlddeceived.ca

    All of the other pages and articles listed on our website explain how and by whom this whole world has been deceived as confirmed in Revelation 12:9.

    September 2, 2012 at 6:33 am |
  9. Hypatia

    Good

    September 1, 2012 at 2:17 pm |
  10. Agnostic Atheism is Healthy for Kids and Grown-Ups Too!

    It's really best for all people including children to have an agnostic approach to god, and an atheistic approach to all religion. It keeps things simple for kids, and let's them be all that they can be. They just need to be taught that some things, like all religion, are just made up by salesmen and politicians from long ago; and that other things, like god, we really don't know a damn thing about.

    Atheists have strong minds, and don't run and hide their misdeeds within their religion (and by doing so, disserving society).

    So instead of praying to make-believe people, get a good cup of tea and go on and sit down and collect your damn thoughts. My goodness.

    mama kindless

    September 1, 2012 at 2:01 pm |
    • .

      -

      http://www.cgg.org/index.cfm/fuseaction/Library.sr/CT/ARTB/k/1186/Gnosticism-False-Knowledge.htm

      September 1, 2012 at 2:36 pm |
    • .o.

      Ugg. don't bother with the link above – some religious site with a caption at top from John where sheeple are adressed.

      September 1, 2012 at 3:33 pm |
  11. Paul B. Huntington III

    I want to take a shower with Tim Tebow. Christ told me his butthole is super tight.

    September 1, 2012 at 1:26 pm |
  12. lol just lol

    a "progressive cardinal" is like a "kind and considerate mass-murderer"

    September 1, 2012 at 1:20 pm |
  13. Christ Lover

    Now he is raping children in heaven.

    September 1, 2012 at 1:15 pm |
  14. .

    http://www.cgg.org/index.cfm/fuseaction/Library.sr/CT/ARTB/k/1186/Gnosticism-False-Knowledge.htm

    September 1, 2012 at 11:49 am |
  15. Jesus Christ

    Ah, could it be one less pedophile left in the world?

    September 1, 2012 at 10:50 am |
  16. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things.

    September 1, 2012 at 7:45 am |
    • hal 9000

      I'm sorry "Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things", but your assertions about prayer and atheism are unfounded. I notice that you continue to repeat these unfounded statements. Would you like me to recommend a book on Alzheimer's? It may help with this problem.

      September 1, 2012 at 10:30 am |
    • .

      You continue to mistaken.

      http://www.cgg.org/index.cfm/fuseaction/Library.sr/CT/ARTB/k/1186/Gnosticism-False-Knowledge.htm

      September 1, 2012 at 12:08 pm |
    • just sayin

      Wonderful Truths that brighten the day, atheism is totally useless and God is available. God bless

      September 1, 2012 at 12:31 pm |
    • shut up

      shut up, you tiresome halfwit pimple-faced troll cunt.

      September 1, 2012 at 2:33 pm |
  17. AvdBerg

    For a better understanding of the history of the Catholic Church we invite you to read the article ‘The Mystery Babylon’ listed on our website http://www.aworlddeceived.ca

    All of the other pages and articles listed on our website explain how and by whom this whole world has been deceived as confirmed in Revelation 12:9.

    September 1, 2012 at 7:21 am |
    • .

      http://www.cgg.org/index.cfm/fuseaction/Library.sr/CT/ARTB/k/1186/Gnosticism-False-Knowledge.htm

      ++

      September 1, 2012 at 12:08 pm |
    • EvolvedDNA

      Avdberg..All religions have deceived the world..except, of course yours, correct.?

      September 1, 2012 at 7:23 pm |
1 2

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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke and Eric Marrapodi with daily contributions from CNN's worldwide newsgathering team.