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Antonio María Rouco Varela

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Styles of
Antonio Rouco Varela
CardinalCoA PioM
Reference style His Eminence
Spoken style Your Eminence
Informal style Cardinal
See Madrid
Antonio María Rouco Varela

Cardinal Rouco Varela.

Antonio María Rouco Varela (born August 24, 1936) is a Spanish prelate of the Roman Catholic Church. He currently serves as Archbishop of Madrid, and was elevated to the cardinalate in 1998.


Antonio Rouco Varela was born in Vilalba to Vicente Rouco and María Eugenia Varela, the latter of whom hailed from Bahía Blanca, Argentina. He has four siblings: Visitación, Jose, Manuel, and Eugenia. He studied at the seminary in Mondoñedo and at the Pontifical University of Salamanca (1954-1958), from where he obtained his licentiate in theology. Rouco was ordained to the priesthood by Bishop Francisco Barbado y Viejo, OP, on March 28, 1959.

He then furthered his studies at the University of Munich, earning a doctorate in canon law in 1964 with a dissertation on church-state relations in 16th century Spain. He held a series of academic posts, teaching fundamental theology, canon law, and ecclesiastical law at the seminary of Mondoñedo, and the University of Munich. In 1976 he was appointed titular Bishop of Gergi and Auxiliary Bishop of Santiago de Compostela. Named Archbishop of Santiago de Compostela in 1984, he played a key role in the hosting of the 4th World Youth Day in 1989. Five years later, in 1994, he was named Archbishop of Madrid.

Pope John Paul II created him Cardinal Priest of S. Lorenzo in Damaso in the consistory of 21 February 1998. He was one of the cardinal electors who participated in the 2005 papal conclave that selected Pope Benedict XVI.


Church architecture

He has been described as "ultra-conservative" for his plan to build improve Church architecture in Madrid.[1]


He has opposed plans by the Spanish left-wing government to remove remaining restrictions to abortion procedures.[2]

Neocatechumenal Way

Cardinal Rouco Varela is also a known supporter of the Neocatechumenal Way and has co-ordinated massive rallies in December 31 of 2007 and 2008 along with its founder, Kiko Arguello in events known as "family days" promoting the Christian model of the family.


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Preceded by
Angel Suquía Goicoechea
Archbishop of Madrid
28 July 1994–incumbent
Succeeded by
gl:Antonio María Rouco Varelala:Antonius María Rouco Varelano:Antonio María Rouco Varelapt:Antonio María Rouco Varela

ru:Роуко Варела, Антонио Мария fi:Antonio María Rouco Varela

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