Local News Archive
Print Issue: January 6, 1983
Called To Be Cardinal, Bernardin Among 18 Names
By Thea Jarvis
It came as good news to the people of the Archdiocese of Atlanta that Archbishop Joseph L. Bernardin of Chicago was among the 18 cardinals named by Pope John Paul II on January 5.
The surprise announcement came during the popes weekly general audience in Rome. Archbishop Bernardin was the only American on the list of cardinals-designate, which included churchmen from North and south America, Africa, Asia, Europe and Oceania.
Bernardin, who heads the U.S. Bishops Committee drafting a pastoral letter on war and peace, and was appointed shepherd of the largest diocese in the United States just this past August, has his roots in the South.
Born in Columbia, South Carolina 54 years ago, ordained to the priesthood in 1952, the new American cardinal came to Atlanta in 1966 as an auxiliary to assist Archbishop Paul J. Hallinan. When Archbishop Hallinan died, he was elected administrator and led the archdiocese until Archbishop Thomas Donnellan arrived in 1968.
Archbishop Bernardin went on to Washington and later to Cincinnati, where he served as archbishop. He is the first man to be named to the College of Cardinals who had formerly served as a bishop in Atlanta.
Archbishop Donnellan had previously met Joseph Bernardin in 1962, when the two men were diocesan chancellors, Archbishop Donnellan in New York and Archbishop Bernardin in Charleston. Their acquaintance was broadened in Rome, during the Second Vatican Council. When Bernardin served as general-secretary, and later president, of the U.S. Catholic Conference and the National Conference of Catholic Bishops, he had high visibility. Leaders of the American Church had the opportunity to get to know him even better, and they liked what they saw.
He is a very kind man who deals exceptionally well with people, said Archbishop Donnellan in his office at the Catholic Center on the morning of Joseph Bernardins appointment. He has the ability to reconcile people with differing viewpoints.
Although Archbishop Bernardin is younger than most called to the College of Cardinals, Archbishop Donnellan observed that he is qualified by way of experience and accomplishment.
Im happy at this recognition of his very devoted service to the Church, and happy that the Church will have the benefit of this mans unique qualities, he said.
Monsignor Jerry Hardy, Chancellor of the Atlanta Archdiocese, has known Joseph Bernardin since the new cardinals first days in Atlanta as auxiliary bishop. Since that time, the two have continued their friendship, despite demands on time and vocation.
Of his friend, Monsignor Hardy remarked, I dont think hell go much for the Prince of the Church title that accompanies the red hat (that cardinals wear). Hell always be more comfortable as brother to the people he leads.
Monsignor Hardy referred to the personal attributes Archbishop Bernardin possesses, talent and humility, administrative competence and pastoral sensitivity, leadership, strength, personal warmth and holiness, adding that he combines the best qualities of a churchman.
That probably makes him sound too good to be true. He almost is, he concluded.
The date set for the consistory elevating the 18 churchmen to the College of Cardinals is February 2. Hamilton Smith, director of music at the Cathedral of Christ the King who is a long time friend of Archbishop Bernardin, is wondering if hell have to change some plans he made with the new cardinal just a few days ago by phone.
I told him I would be in Chicago on February 4 and invited him to have dinner with me, Smith told The Georgia Bulletin. He answered by saying that the best meal in Chicago is served in his house!
This much is certain. The public installation of the cardinals will be held in Rome on the Feast of the Presentation and the following men will be elevated to the Churchs College of Cardinals:
Patriarch Antoine Pierre Khoraiche of Antioch of the Maronites (Beirut).
Archbishop Bernard Yago of Abidjan, Ivory Coast.
Archbishop Aurelio Sabattani, pro-prefect of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signature.
Archbishop Franjo Kumaric of Zagreb, Yugoslavia.
Archbishop Giuseppe Casoria, pro-prefect of the Sacred Congregation for the Sacraments and Divine Worship.
Archbishop Jose Ali Lebrun Moratimos of Caracas, Venezuela.
Archbishop Joseph L. Bernardin of Chicago.
Archbishop Michael Michal Kitbunchu of Bangkok, Thailand.
Archbishop Alexandre do Nascimento of Lubango, Angola, also apostolic administrator ad nutum sanctae sedis of Onjiva, Angola.
Archbishop Alfonso Lopez Trujillo of Medelin, Colombia, president of the Latin American Bishops Conference.
Archbishop Godfried Danneels of Malimes of Brussels, Belgium.
Archbishop Thomas Stafford Williams of Wellington, New Zealand.
Archbishop Carlo Maria Martini of Milan, Italy.
Archbishop Jean-Marie Lustiger of Paris, France.
Archbishop Jozef Glemp of Gmiezno and Warsaw, Poland.
Bishop Julijama Vaivods, apostolic administrator ad nutum sanctae sedis of Riga and Liepaja, Soviet Union.
Bishop Joachim Meisner of Berlin.
Jesuit Father Henri deLubac.