Born in Gagos de Jarmelo in Guarda, Portugal, to Antonio and Maria (née da Natividade Martins) Saraiva, he joined the Congregation of the Missionary Sons of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, and professed his vows on August 22, 1950. Martins was ordained as a priest by Archbishop Ettore Cunial on March 16, 1957. He studied at the Pontifical Gregorian University and the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas (Angelicum) in Rome, where he earned a licentiate and a doctorate (respectively) in theology.
Martins taught metaphysics for a year in Marino, Italy, then in 1959 came to the Roman Claretianum, where he taught fundamental and sacramental theology for a decade. He became rector of the Pontifical Urbaniana University for three terms (1977-1980, 1980-1983, 1986-1988).
|Styles of |
José Saraiva Martins
|Reference style||His Eminence|
|Spoken style||Your Eminence|
|See||Palestrina (titular see)|
On May 26, 1988, he was appointed Secretary of the Curial Congregation for Catholic Education and titular archbishop of Thuburnica. He received his episcopal consecration from Cardinal Agostino Casaroli, with Archbishops Jan Pieter Schotte and Giovanni Battista Re serving as co-consecrators, on the following July 2 in the Basilica of Ss. XII Apostoli. On May 30, 1998, he was named Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, the organization within the Roman Curia that pronounces judgments on beatifications and canonizations. Martins was created Cardinal Deacon of Nostra Signora del Sacro Cuore by Pope John Paul II in the consistory of February 21, 2001. All major Vatican officials automatically lose their positions during a sede vacante, and the cardinal lost his position on April 2, 2005 on the death of the Pope. He was later confirmed to office by Pope Benedict XVI on April 21. He was one of the cardinal electors who participated in the 2005 papal conclave that selected Pope Benedict XVI.
On July 8, 2008, it was announced that he would be succeeded by Angelo Amato. On February 24, 2009, he was promoted to the order of cardinal bishops, with title of the suburbicarian see of Palestrina.
- ↑ "Promozione all’Ordine dei Vescovi dell’Em.mo Card. José Saraiva Martins" (in Italian). Press Office of the Holy See. 2009-02-24. http://188.8.131.52/news_services/bulletin/news/23466.php?index=23466&po_date=24.02.2009&lang=en. Retrieved 2009-02-24.
|Catholic Church titles|
|Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints|
30 May 1998–9 July 2008
| Succeeded by|