Paulo Evaristo Arns
|Cardinal, Archbishop Emeritus of São Paulo|
Paulo Evaristo Arns in 1982
|See||São Paulo (Emeritus)|
|Appointed||22 October 1970|
|Installed||1 November 1970|
|Term ended||9 April 1998|
|Other posts||Cardinal-Priest of Sant’Antonio da Padova in Via Tuscolana|
30 November 1945|
by José Pereira Alves
3 July 1966|
by Agnelo Rossi
5 March 1973|
by Paul VI
14 September 1921|
Forquilhinha, Santa Catarina, Brazil
|Motto||ex spe in spem|
|Coat of arms|
Paulo Evaristo Arns
|Reference style||His Eminence|
|Spoken style||Your Eminence|
|See||São Paulo (emeritus)|
Paulo Evaristo Arns OFM (Brazilian Portuguese: [ˈpawlu evaˈɾistu ˈaɾns]; born 14 September 1921 in Forquilhinha) is Cardinal and Archbishop Emeritus of São Paulo. He is currently the Cardinal Protopriest of the Roman Catholic Church.
Early life and education
Paulo Arns was born as the fifth of thirteen children of the German immigrants Gabriel and Helana Arns. Three of his sisters would later become nuns and one of his brothers a Franciscan. One of his sisters, Zilda Arns, a pediatrician who founded the Brazilian bishops' children's commission, was killed in the 2010 Haiti earthquake.
On 10 December 1943, Arns joined the Franciscans; he was ordained a priest on 30 November 1945.
From 1941 to 1943 Arns studied philosophy in Curitiba and then theology from 1944 to 1947 in Petrópolis. Then he attended the Sorbonne in Paris studying literature, Latin, Greek,Syriac, and ancient history, he graduated with a doctorate in classical languages in 1946. Arns later returned to the Sorbonne to study for a D.Litt., he obtained his doctorate in 1950 for a dissertation written about Saint Jerome.
Prior to his episcopal consecration Arns carried out various educational roles in a number of institutions throughout Brazil. He spent a significant amount of time serving as a professor at the seminary of Agudos in São Paulo, lecturing on the faculty of Philosophy, Science and Letters of Bauru furthermore, he had responsibilities at a number of other higher education institutes (normally being on the faculty), finally becoming a professor at the Catholic University of Petropolis, this being the last academic office he held before becoming a bishop.
Arns was consecrated titular bishop of Respecta on 3 July 1966 and appointed archbishop of São Paulo on 22 October 1970. As Archbishop he sold the episcopal palace, a mansion standing in its own park. Two things horrified him: the massive electricity bills and the staff of 25 sisters and brothers all to look after one man. He used the money from the sale to build a social station in the favelas.
Arns developed a plan for the division of the Archdiocese of São Paulo. He felt that the manner in which his plan had been executed had ensured its failure, remarking that "everything I asked for was disregarded and the traditionalist line prevailed. It was our wish that a different way of dealing with pastoral activities in the metropolitan regions be adopted, but the Roman curia, treating this just as any other matter, paid no heed for it... because of the way it was done, the church in São Paulo is spending 10 times more in order to produce results which are 10 times smaller".
Cardinal Arns retired at the age of almost 77 on 15 April 1998, becoming Archbishop Emeritus, after he had already sought and received the right to retire from Pope John Paul II on his 75th birthday in 1996. Being already past the age of 80, he did not participate in the conclave of 2005 that elected Pope Benedict XVI. He did not travel to Rome to participate as a non-elector at the conclave that chose Pope Francis. On 19 March 2013 at the papal inauguration of Pope Francis, Arns as the protopriest or senior-cardinal priest had the privilege of pronouncing the formal prayer for the new pope at his inauguration, but Cardinal Godfried Danneels did so on his stead.
Following his retirement Arns has held the UNESCO Chair for Peace Education, Human Rights, Democracy and Tolerance at the State University of São Paulo, returning to the educational role he left behind upon taking episcopal office.
Since the death of Cardinal William Wakefield Baum on 23 July 2015, Arns has been the last surviving Cardinal elevated by Pope Paul VI. Pope emeritus Benedict XVI was also created a Cardinal by Paul VI and is still alive, although he is no longer a Cardinal. He participated as a cardinal-elector in the two conclaves of 1978 that elected Popes John Paul I and John Paul II.
Arns was one of the more liberal members of the hierarchy of the church and frequently expressed views at odds with the official position of the Church. In 2002, he became one of the highest-ranking members of the church to express public disagreement with the church position of clerical celibacy, claiming it was an unnecessary rule without biblical basis. He criticised Pope John Paul II for prohibiting debate on the subject.
Toward the end of his time as Archbishop of São Paulo Arns criticized the hierarchy and governance of the Vatican, notably the leadership style of Pope John Paul II. Arns expressed shock at the behavior of the Vatican in attempting to control the activities of priests and remove those who did not act in the appropriate manner. Later Arns stated that he felt that the Roman Curia holds too much influence and should not have been given a "free rein" by the pope. Arns criticised the Curia for not promoting diversity of opinion within the Church, and for lacking an ecumenical attitude. Arns, along with Archbishop John R. Quinn of San Francisco criticised the bureaucracy of the church, stating that his impression was that "the curia is governing the church" and that he "strongly disagreed" with the Pope's understanding that "the curia is the pope".
He defended the liberation theologian and former Catholic priest Leonardo Boff, producing letters from the Roman Curia that he believed were evidence that Boff was treated unfairly. Arns had always encouraged a preferential option for the oppressed and the poor, encouraging religious orders in São Paulo to transfer their energies from middle class schools and hospitals in central areas of the city to the millions of marginalised people living on the periphery. with respect to the requirement that Catholics practice abstinence on certain days, that is, refrain from eating meat, Arns told the poor that on such a day "if they can find meat to eat, which is rare, they should eat it, and do some good work to mark the day, because not eating meat is not the point". He defended his position by saying that "Canon law gives me full power to dispense people from abstinence; there is no problem".
Arns swiftly earned respect within Brazil because of his unwillingness to remain silent about his contempt for the dictatorship. He became one of the most popular clergymen of Brazil because of his tireless campaigning for human rights.
Arns himself must be reckoned a significant cause of the military withdrawal and return of civilian government in Brazil. During the dictatorship he visited political prisoners speaking out against the abuses of the military. Prior to governmental change in 1985, Arns had, with the assistance of the Presbyterian minister Jaime Wright, photocopied the military government's records on torture, and then smuggled the copies out to have them published, the book Brazil Never Again which was based on this evidence; it became a bestseller and began the widespread move for change in Brazil.
Arns led many direct campaigns against the dictatorship in Brazil. Shortly after taking office he learnt that a young priest had been arrested and detained after his home was raided by secret police, the priest being arrested for having possession of documentation encouraging rebellion. Arns wrote to the Governor of São Paulo, then when he was denied entrance to the prison holding the detainee Arns used the Archdiocese's radio service and newspaper to denounce the events, also choosing to have a description of the arrest and torture nailed to the door of every church. One reporter for the National Catholic Reporter described the occurrence as the beginning of “an open war between the archdiocese and the military.”
After the arrest and torture of Ribeirão Preto nun Sister Maurina, Arns led several campaigns against the use of torture during the military dictatorship, and pursued the topic to the extent of forcing the Brazilian conference of bishops to make it a priority. Speaking out on the matter frequently, the New York Times described Arns' analysis of the affairs as "the strongest, most courageous affirmation ever made by a Brazilian prelate against the torture of prisoners". Arns had managed the project Tortura Nunca Mais (Never Again Torture) at the end of the 1970s.
Other political figures
In 1989 he praised Cuban President Fidel Castro. Writing on the 30th anniversary of the Cuban revolution, Arns addressed his letter to "dearest Fidel", informing Castro that he is "present daily in my prayers" and that he [Arns] "ask[s] the Father that he always concede you the grace of guiding the destinies of your country". Arns also articulated his wish that Castro always govern over Cuba. Provoking fierce reaction, Arns was subject to criticism from the conservative publications of Brazil's media, and numerous bishops, including Eugênio de Araújo Sales of Rio de Janeiro, the most prominent conservative ordinary in the Brazilian church. However, Arns was in turn defended by his admirers, notably former priest Leonardo Boff.
Arns also criticised U.S. President George W. Bush for his approach to international cooperation in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks, noting that "the president did not go to the United Nations to seek the opinion of everyone. He went alone to the most important governments of the world. I felt this showed a lack of world sensitivity." He condemned the war in Afghanistan as well as "a war against a nation when one man or two or three or 10 are responsible".
- A quem iremos, Senhor? – To Whom Shall We Go, Lord?
- A humanidade caminha para a fraternidade – Humanity on the Road toward Fraternity
- Paul VI: voce é contra ou a favor? – Paul VI: Are you for or against?
- Cartas de Santo Inácio: Introdução, Tradução e Notas – Letters of Saint Ignatius: Introduction, Translation, and Notes
- Cartas de São Clemente Romano: Introdução, Tradução e Notas – Letters of St. Clement of Rome: Introduction, Translation, and Notes
- A guerra acabará se você quiser – Wars Will End If You Want
- Comunidade: união e ação – Community: Union and Action
- Da Esperança a Utopia – The Hope of Utopia (Autobiography)
- Cardinal Leo Joseph Suenens, A Corresponsabilidade na Igreja de hoje (The Coresponsibility of the Church Today)
- Cardinal Jean Daniélou, Nova História da Igreia" (A New History of the Church)
- Universidade de Brasilia
- Universidade Católica de Goiás
- Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster
- Catholic University Nijmegen Netherlands
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Paulo Evaristo Arns.|
- Catholic Pages. Biography of Dr Arns.
- Holy See Press Office and Archives. Vatican biography of Dr Arns.
- Cardinal Title S. Antonio da Padova in Via Tuscolana GCatholic.org
- "Cardinal Arns says pope gives his curia free rein". National Catholic Reporter. 11 October 1996.
- Inaugural Mass of the Pontificate (Vatican video of Pope Francis' papal inauguration on YouTube
- L'omelia di papa Francesco. famigliacristiana.it. 19 March 2013
- Papa Francesco indossa pallio e anello del pescatore, inizia Messa. tmnews.it. 19 March 2013
- "Brazil cardinal questions celibacy". BBC News. 29 April 2002. Retrieved 6 April 2016.
- Open Democracy. Cardinal Arns of Brazil on Pope John Paul II, the Vatican and the poor 5 April 2005
- OFM News. The 80th Birthday of Paulo Evaristo Cardinal Arns 29 April 2002
- National Catholic Reporter. Dom Paulo: a voice for human rights 28 February 2003
- "Brazil Cardinal's Praise of Castro Stirs Protest". New York Times. 5 February 1989. Retrieved 6 April 2016.
- Hebblethwaite, Margaret (5 April 2002). "Brazil cardinal recalls battles with curia". National Catholic Reporter. Retrieved 6 April 2016.
|Catholic Church titles|
|Archbishop of São Paulo
| Succeeded by|
9 July 2012–present