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Italian Cardinal Farina turns 80, number of cardinal-electors dips to 110

September 24, 2013

Cardinal Raffaele Farina, the retired Vatican librarian and archivist, celebrated his 80th birthday on September 24 and therefore became ineligible to vote in a papal election.

Born in Buonalbergo, Italy, Raffaele Farina joined the Salesian order in 1954 and was ordained to the priesthood in 1958. He was made prefect of the Vatican library in 1997, and Vatican librarian and archivist in 2007, and presided over a massive and complicated renovation of the library building. He was raised to the College of Cardinals by Pope Benedict XVI in 2007, and retired in 2012 at the age of 78.

There are now 201 living cardinals, of whom 110 are eligible to participate in a papal conclave. Six more cardinals will mark their 80th birthdays by March 2014, creating openings for new cardinal-electors that Pope Francis might fill when he makes his first appointments to the College of Cardinals.


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