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Franc Rode, CM (born September 23, 1934) is a Slovenian Cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church. He currently serves as Prefect of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, and was elevated to the cardinalate in 2006.
Early life and religious profession
Franc Rode was born in Rodica near Ljubljana, in Yugoslavia (modern-day Slovenia). In 1945 he and his family sought refuge in Austria and later fled to Argentina in 1948. He entered the Congregation of the Mission, more commonly known as the Lazarists, in Buenos Aires in 1952, making his perpetual profession in 1957. Rode studied at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, and at the Catholic Institute of Paris, from where he obtained his doctorate in theology in 1968.
He was ordained to the priesthood by Bishop André-Jean-François Defebvre, CM, on June 29, 1960 in Paris. In 1965, at the request of his superiors, Rode returned to Yugoslavia, where he worked as vice-pastor, director of studies and provincial visitor of the Lazarists, and professor of fundamental theology and missionology at the Theological Faculty of Ljubljana.
In 1978 he was made consultor of the Secretariat for Non-Believers in the Roman Curia, being transferred to that dicastery in 1981 and rising to become its Undersecretary in 1982. During this time, he assisted in the organization of some significant dialogue sessions with European Marxists. When Pope John Paul II united the Pontifical Council for Culture and Pontifical Council for Non-Believers in 1993, he appointed Rode Secretary of the new Pontifical Council for Culture. As Secretary, he served as the second-highest official of that dicastery, under Paul Poupard.
On March 5, 1997, Rode was appointed Archbishop of Ljubljana, and thus de facto Primate of Slovenia, by Pope John Paul. He received his episcopal consecration on the following April 6 from Archbishop Alojzij Šuštar, with Archbishops Franc Perko and Aloysius Ambrozic serving as co-consecrators, in the Cathedral of Ljubljana. The Primate successfully guided the negotiations for a new concordat to final approval in 2004.
Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life
He returned to the Roman Curia upon his nomination as Prefect of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life on February 11, 2004. Pope Benedict XVI later created Rode Cardinal Deacon of S. Francesco Saverio alla Garbatella in the consistory of March 24, 2006.
He is a member of the various offices in the Roman Curia. These are: congregations of Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments; for Bishops; for the Evangelization of Peoples; for Catholic Education; Pontifical Council for Culture and the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei.
|Catholic Church titles|
|Archbishop of Ljubljana|
| Succeeded by|
Eduardo Martínez Somalo
|Prefect of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life|