H.E. Jan Cardinal Schotte

H.E. Jan Cardinal Schotte      
Written by Royal Deputation   

His Eminence Jan Cardinal Schotte has died unexpectedly in Rome on 10 January 2005 at the age of 74; he had been a Bailiff Grand Cross of Justice of the Constantinian Order since 1997.

Ordained in 1952 and consecrated Bishop in 1983 he was a noted canon lawyer and theologian who was for many years affiliated with the university of Louvain. In 1983 he was appointed vice-president of Pontifical Commission Iustitia et Pax, December 20, 1983 then in April 1985 elevated to Archbishop and appointed secretary general of the World Synod of Bishops. On 26 November 1994 he was created a Cardinal Deacon of the diaconry title of S. Giuliano dei Fiamminghi, continuing his position in the Synod of Bishops until resigning on reaching the age limit, on 11 February 2004.

Cardinal Schotte served as a special attache for the Secretariat of State under three pontificates, starting with Pope Paul VI in 1972. He served on several Vatican commissions and councils, and was secretary of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, 1980-83.

He was best remembered as secretary-general of the Vatican-based Synod of Bishops from 1985 to 2004, when he retired from the position.

During his 19-year tenure, Cardinal Schotte coordinated more than 10 major synods on such topics as religious life, the priesthood and the role of the laity. Some were regional synods that examined church life and evangelization strategies on every continent.

His last duty was as papal envoy at the solemn closing celebrations of the year dedicated to the 150th anniversary of the proclamation of the Dogma of the Immaculate Conception, that took place in the National Shrine in Washington, D.C., United States of America, on December 8, 2004.

His funeral Mass was celebrated by His Holiness the Pope in Saint Peter's Basilica, on 14 January 2004.

 

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