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Italian Cardinal Baldelli dead at 77

CWN - September 21, 2012

Cardinal Fortunato Baldelli, the former head of the Apostolic Penitentiary, has died in Rome at the age of 77.

The Italian prelate was a veteran of the Vatican diplomatic corps, serving as the papal representative in Angola, Peru, and France before he was appointed in 2009 the Apostolic Penitentiary. He was elevated to the College of Cardinals by Pope Benedict XVI in 2010. He retired in 2012 at the age of 76.

In a telegram of condolence to the brother of the deceased cardinal, Pope Benedict spoke of his “exemplary witness of Christian and priestly life.”

With the death of Cardinal Baldelli there are now 205 living members of the College of Cardinals, of whom 116 are under the age of 80 and eligible to vote in a papal conclave.

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