Albano Bishop Marcello Semeraro, 72, was in tears when he announced at an October 15 meeting of priest in Aprilia his nomination as the Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints.
He said he had received a phone call from Francis the day before, inviting him for a chat in Santa Marta. Semeraro replied: "Should I come with my lawyer?"
Instead, Francis informed him of his promotion saying, "Only you know about this, because I haven't told anyone." When Semeraro objected because of his age, Francis replied, "I too had to change my life when I was 77."
Semeraro is a former professor of ecclesiology at the the Lateran University where he was an assistant of famous Monsignor Brunero Gherardini (+2017) who called him a "theologian of little originality and depth." His meteoric career under John Paul II, Benedict XVI, and Francis doesn’t therefore come as a surprise.
Picture: Marcello Semeraro © wikicommons, CC BY-SA, #newsSdyticylhu