Catholic World News

+Cardinal Miloslav Vlk, 84

March 20, 2017

A Czech cardinal who exercised his priestly ministry in a clandestine manner under Communist rule died on March 18 at the age of 84.

Born in 1932, Cardinal Miloslav Vlk served in the military and worked as an archivist before being ordained to the priesthood in 1968 during the Prague Spring. After Communist officials forbade him to exercise his priestly ministry in 1978, the future prelate performed a clandestine ministry while he worked as a window washer.

In 1990, following the Velvet Revolution, Pope St. John Paul II appointed Father Vlk bishop of Ceské Budejovice (Budweis), and the following year, he was named archbishop of Prague. In 1994, Archbishop Vlk was created a cardinal, and he retired from his see in 2010.

“I recall with admiration his tenacious fidelity to Christ, despite deprivations and persecutions against the Church, as well as his fruitful and abundant apostolic activity inspired by the desire to bear witness to all the joy of the Gospel, promoting an authentic faithful ecclesial renewal, always obedient to the inspiration of the Holy Spirit,” Pope Francis said in his telegram of condolence to Cardinal Vlk’s successor, Cardinal Dominik Duka.


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