Giuseppe Ferretto
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Giuseppe Ferretto

Giuseppe Antonio Ferretto
Major Penitentiary Emeritus of the Apostolic Penitentiary
ChurchRoman Catholic Church
Appointed7 April 1967
Term ended1 March 1973
PredecessorFernando Cento
SuccessorGiuseppe Paupini
Other post(s)Cardinal-Bishop of Sabina e Poggio Mirteto (1961-73)
Ordination24 February 1923
Consecration27 December 1958
by Pope John XXIII
Created cardinal16 January 1961
by Pope John XXIII
RankCardinal-Priest (1961)
Cardinal-Bishop (1961-73)
Personal details
Birth nameGiuseppe Antonio Ferretto
Born9 March 1899
Rome, Kingdom of Italy
Died17 March 1973(1973-03-17) (aged 74)
Rome, Italy
BuriedChiesa di Immacolata e San Benedetto Giuseppe Labre a Via Taranto
ParentsTommaso Ferretto
Adele Stazi
Previous post(s)
Alma materPontifical Roman Seminary
Pontifical Lateran University
MottoFortis in fide
Coat of armsGiuseppe Antonio Ferretto's coat of arms
Styles of
Giuseppe Ferretto
Coat of arms of Giuseppe Ferretto.svg
Reference styleHis Eminence
Spoken styleYour Eminence
Informal styleCardinal
SeeSabina e Poggio Mirteto (suburbicarian)

Giuseppe Antonio Ferretto (9 March 1899 - 17 March 1973) was an Italian Cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church who served as Major Penitentiary in the Roman Curia from 1967 to 1973, and was elevated to the rank of cardinal in 1961.


Ferretto was born in Rome to Tommaso and Adele (née Stazi) Ferretto. He studied at the Pontifical Roman Seminary (minor and major branches), the Pontifical Lateran University (where he obtained his doctorates in theology and canon and civil law), and the Pontifical Institute of Christian Archeology in Rome. Ordained to the priesthood on 24 February 1923, Ferretto finished his studies in 1926 and then taught at the Pontifical Lateran University and the Pontifical Urbaniana University until 1958. He served as an official in the Vicariate of Rome from 1929 to 1939, when he was made a referendary of the Apostolic Signatura on 23 April. Before becoming a canon of St. Peter's Basilica on 1 May 1953, he was named substitute (7 June 1943) and later assessor (27 June 1950) of the Sacred Consistorial Congregation.

He was also a noted archaeologist.[1][2]

On 14 December 1958, Ferretto was appointed Titular Archbishop of Serdica by Pope John XXIII. He received his episcopal consecration in St. Peter's Basilica on the following 27 December from Pope John, with Bishops Girolamo Bortignon, OFM Cap and Gioacchino Muccin serving as co-consecrators. Ferretto was named Secretary of the College of Cardinals on 20 January 1959.

He was created cardinal priest of Santa Croce in Gerusalemme by Pope John in the consistory of 16 January 1961.[3] There had been speculation that he had been one of the cardinals appointed in pectore on 28 March 1960,[4] but his precedence in the College of Cardinals did not reflect such an appointment.

Ferretto was named Cardinal Bishop of Sabina e Poggio Mirteto on 26 March 1961.[5] Pope John had recently changed the way cardinals were raised to the rank of cardinal bishop. Previously, the senior cardinal deacon and the senior cardinal priest had the right to opt for the title of cardinal bishop when one of the sees assigned to a cardinal bishop became vacant. Pope John made the appointment the prerogative of the pope. While the older method had ensured that only senior clerics of advanced age held the title of cardinal bishop, Pope John's first appointment under the new rule was Ferretto, who had just turned 62.[6] A cardinal for just two months, he was the lowest ranking member of the order of cardinal priests.

He attended the Second Vatican Council from 1962 to 1965. He participated in the 1963 papal conclave, where he was also thought to be a possible candidate for election to the papacy.[1] He was appointed Major Penitentiary on 7 April 1967.[7] Pope Paul named him a participant in the first post-Vatican II Synod of Bishops in 1967.[8] On 1 March 1973, he resigned as Major Penitentiary.

Ferretto died on 17 March 1973 in Rome, at age 74. He had been suffering from a heart condition.[1] He is buried in the church of Immacolata e S. Benedetto Giuseppe Labre a via Taranto.


  1. ^ a b c "Cardinal Ferretto Dies at 74; Chief Penitentiary of Church". New York Times. 19 March 1973. Retrieved 2017.
  2. ^ "Four New Hats". Time. 26 December 1960. Retrieved 2017.
  3. ^ Cortesi, Arnaldo (17 January 1961). "4 New Cardinal Elevated in Rome" (PDF). New York Times. Retrieved 2017.
  4. ^ "Three in Pectore". Time. 11 April 1960. Retrieved 2017.
  5. ^ Acta Apostolicae Sedis (PDF). LIII. 1961. p. 199. Retrieved 2021.
  6. ^ Guruge, Anura (2010). The Next Pope: After Pope Benedict XVI (2nd Revised ed.). WOWNH LLC. p. 120. ISBN 9780615353722. Retrieved 2017.
  7. ^ "Pope Paul Makes Curia Change; Liberals Get Several High Posts" (PDF). New York Times. 9 April 1967. Retrieved 2017.
  8. ^ Doty, Robert C. (4 October 1967). "2 Cardinals Back Move for Modified Canon Law" (PDF). New York Times. Retrieved 2017.

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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