January 6, 2012
Fr. Prosper Grech OSA
Before the Angelus Prayer offered on the Feast of the Epiphany, January 6, Pope Benedict XVI announced from the window of the papal residence in Rome, the creation of 22 new Cardinals of the Church. Among them was our own Fr. Prospero Grech, OSA, of the Maltese Province, presently and for many decades a member of the community of Collegio Santa Monica, Rome. Father Grech, very vibrant at 86 years of age, becomes the first Augustinian to be received into the College of Cardinals since the nomination of Sebastiano Cardinal Martinelli in 1901, while he was serving as Apostolic Delegate in the United States of America. Father Grech, a well-known and highly respected Scripture Scholar will become the second Maltese Cardinal.
Here the letter of our Prior General to the members of the Order:
Dear Brothers and Sisters:
It is with great joy that I send this communication, to share with you the news that the Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, announced today that our brother, Fr. Prosper Grech, of the Province of Malta and long-time resident at the International College of St. Monica in Rome, has been chosen to become a Cardinal.
Today, January 6th, the Pope announced his decision to celebrate a Concistory on February 18th, with the intention of creating 22 new cardinals. Among the names of those chosen, is our brother Fr. Grech. Fr. Prosper, 86 years of age, entered the Order in Malta in 1943, and was ordained to the priesthood in 1950. He has served for many years in Rome, almost all of them as a member of the community at St. Monica’s. He is a well known professor of Sacred Scripture, and has been a professor at various universities in Rome, especially the Biblicum, but also the Lateran and Gregorian Universities. He is the co-founder and first President of our Patristic Institute, the Augustinianum. He has also collaborated with numerous dicasteries of the Holy See, especially the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
In his proclamation made today, the Holy Father announced with great joy the Concistory for creating new Cardinals, among whom he has chosen outstanding churchmen who are especially distinguished for their service to the Church. Our brother Fr. Prosper Grech was one of those chosen.
For this we are deeply grateful to God and to our Holy Father Pope Benedict. We express our congratulations to Fr. Grech and we rejoice in this recognition of his many years of service, especially in his dedication to the study and teaching of the Word of God.
Fr. Robert F. Prevost OSA