|Styles of |
|Reference style||His Eminence|
|Spoken style||Your Eminence|
|See||Rio de Janeiro|
Born in Bom Retiro, Joaçaba, Brazil, to Alberto Reinaldo Scheid and Rosália Joana Scheid, he studied at the Dehonian Fathers' seminary; he earned a doctorate of Sacred Theology in Christology and was ordained a priest in Rome on 3 July 1960. He taught dogmatic theology and liturgy in Brazil until on 11 February 1981 he was appointed Bishop of São José dos Campos and ordained a bishop on 1 May 1981.
Appointed Archbishop of Florianópolis on 23 January 1991, he served in that post for ten years before being named Archbishop of São Sebastião do Rio de Janeiro and Ordinary for Eastern-Rite faithful resident in Brazil, on July 25, 2001. He officially took over the diocese of Rio de Janeiro on September 22, 2001. In South America, Scheid also served as President of South Region IV of the Brazilian Bishops’ Conference and Counsellor of the Pontifical Commission for Latin America (as of November 25, 2002).
Honors and awards
- Santos Dumont Medal (September 19, 2002)
- Honorary citizen of the Rio de Janeiro State — conferred by the State's Legislative Assembly on August 19, 2002
- Aeronautical Medal of Honor (October 23, 2002)
- The Necklace of Judiciary Honor — conferred by the Rio de Janeiro State Judiciary on December 8, 2002
- Pedro Ernesto Medal — conferred by the Rio de Janeiro City Council on September 10, 2003
- Motion of Honor from the Niterói City Council, in honor of his Cardinalate, on October 8, 2003
- Vote of Applause from the Senate of Brazil, in honor of his appointment to the Cardinalate, on October 7, 2003
- Motion of Admiration and Congratulation from the Rio de Janeiro City Council, in honor of his appointment to the Cardinalate, on October 30, 2003
In the months during which the health of Pope John Paul II failed, Cardinal Scheid, despite being a known conservative, spoke in favor of having an African pope, which many interpreted as support for an eventual candidacy of Francis Arinze. At the conclave, however, although he has not revealed the inner workings of it, many believe that he might have changed his mind and supported Joseph Ratzinger's candidacy.
At the day of his departure to Rome, for the Funeral of Pope John Paul II, Cardinal Scheid granted an interview at the Rio de Janeiro International Airport that caused some discomfort: when inquired as to his opinion on President Lula as a Catholic, Scheid declared that he did not believe President Lula to be a "true Catholic", but rather "chaotic", since he did not practice or professed his faith. The president was made aware of the Cardinal's words during a layover in Recife, on his way to the Vatican as well. Lula avoided comments on the Cardinal himself or his attitude, but responded that he was indeed a Catholic and that his relationship with God was of a very personal nature, with no need for it to become a public affair.
The Brazilian press tried to explore the incident further, seizing the press conference granted in Rome by the four Brazilian Cardinal electors at the Brazilian embassy. Reporters questioned the foremost Cardinal in Brazil, Cláudio Hummes, in front of Cardinal Scheid, if he agreed with that description of the President's faith. Hummes disagreed, claiming that President Lula was "Catholic in his own way". The reporters then immediately turned to Cardinal Scheid, expecting his response, but he declined any further comments. Although that was the end of the public repercussions of Cardinal Scheid's allegations, it is reported that Cardinal Hummes was not made aware that he was commenting on a statement from Cardinal Scheid, and would have later apologized to him for discrediting his words in public (and in front of him). Some had feared that the incident could have triggered animosity between the two Cardinals, which could have jeopardized Cardinal Hummes' supposed candidacy to the succession of John Paul II.
Eugênio de Araújo Sales
|Archbishop of Rio de Janeiro|
25 July 2001–27 February 2009
| Succeeded by|
Orani João Tempesta