Emmanuel III Delly

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  • Emmanuel III Delly
  • ܡܪܝ ܥܡܢܘܐܝܠ ܬܠܝܬܝܐ ܕܠܝ
  • مار عمانوئيل الثالث دلّي
Cardinal Patriarch of Babylon of the Chaldeans
Native name
ܡܪܝ ܥܡܢܘܐܝܠ ܬܠܝܬܝܐ ܕܠܝ
ChurchChaldean Catholic Church
Appointed3 December 2003
Term ended19 December 2012
PredecessorRaphael I Bidawid
SuccessorLouis Raphaël I Sako
Ordination21 December 1952
Consecration16 April 1963
by Paul II Cheikho
Created cardinal24 November 2007
by Pope Benedict XVI
Personal details
Birth nameEmmanuel Karim Delly
Born27 September 1927
Tel Keppe, Iraq
Died8 April 2014 (aged 86)
San Diego, California, U.S.
DenominationChaldean Catholic
Previous post
  • Auxiliary Bishop of Babylon (1962–1997)
  • Titular Bishop of Palaeopolis in Asia (1962–1967)
  • Titular Archbishop of Kaskar dei Caldie (1967–2003)
  • Curial Bishop of Babylon (1997–2002)
  • Chaldean Archbishop of Baghdad (2003–2012)

Mar Emmanuel III Delly (Syriac: ܡܪܝ ܥܡܢܘܐܝܠ ܬܠܝܬܝܐ ܕܠܝ‎, Arabic: مار عمانوئيل الثالث دلّي‎) (27 September 1927 – 8 April 2014) was the Patriarch Emeritus of Babylon of the Chaldeans and former Primate of the Chaldean Catholic Church, an Eastern Catholic sui juris particular church of the Catholic Church, and also a Cardinal. An ethnic Chaldean,[1] he was born in Tel Keppe and was ordained a priest on 21 December 1952. He was consecrated a bishop ten years later in December 1962 at the age of 35. He was elected Patriarch of the Chaldean Church on 3 December 2003, succeeding the late Patriarch Raphael I Bidawid. He was created a Cardinal Bishop on 24 November 2007.


Episcopal coat of arms of the Patriarchial See of Babylon

Karem Delly was born in Tel Keppe, in northern Iraq, on 27 September 1927 to Jarjes Murad Delly and Katrina Putros. He was baptized on 6 October 1927 by Father Francis Kattola.

Episcopal life[edit]

Since his election as Patriarch in December 2003, Mar Emmanuel III Delly continued to work for the Chaldean Church. In Iraq, the Chaldean Church, which is the largest Christian group, consists of eight dioceses totaling 100 parishes and approximately 1,000,000 people. Additionally, there are another eight dioceses outside of Iraq, in countries including Iran, Turkey, Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, Europe, Australia, Canada and the U.S. It is estimated that the Chaldean population is over one and a half million devotees worldwide. He was well known for his respect and cooperation with leaders of other churches and faiths, mainly Muslims.[2]

During his 42 years as a bishop, Delly's contributions to the Chaldean Church include building of many churches in and outside of Iraq. He supervised the Chaldean monasteries and convents, as well as several Chaldean religious journals and publications.

On 17 October 2007, Pope Benedict XVI announced that he would make Delly a Cardinal.[3] Delly was elevated to the College of Cardinals in the consistory at St. Peter's Basilica on November 24, 2007.[4] Pope Benedict XVI said that by naming Delly a cardinal he was demonstrating his "spiritual closeness and [his] affection" for Iraqi Christians.[5]

On 19 December 2012, Delly resigned as patriarch of Chaldean Catholic Church and Pope Benedict named Archeparch Jacques Ishaq as administrator ad interim. At the same time Pope Benedict convoked a synod to be held to Rome of the Chaledean Church to choose Delly's successor as patriarch.[6]

Cardinal Delly did not participate in the 2013 conclave, having already reached age 80.


Cardinal Delly died on 8 April 2014, aged 86, in San Diego, California, where he had lived in retirement. Pope Francis offered his condolences.

His funeral was held at St. Peter's Chaldean Catholic Cathedral in San Diego and at Mother of God Cathedral in Detroit. He is buried in Holy Sepulchre Catholic Cemetery in Detroit. This is the first time a Chaldean patriarch has been buried outside the homeland.[citation needed]

Educational degrees[edit]


Mar Emmanuel III Delly spoke Chaldean Neo-Aramaic, Syriac, Arabic, French, Italian, Latin, and English fluently.[citation needed]

Ordination history of
Emmanuel III Delly
Priestly ordination
Date21 December 1952
Episcopal consecration
Principal consecratorPaul II Cheikho
Co-consecratorsRaphaël I Bidawid,
Armand-Etienne M. Blanquet du Chayla, O.C.D.
Date19 April 1963
Elevated byPope Benedict XVI
Date24 November 2007
Episcopal succession
Bishops consecrated by Emmanuel III Delly as principal consecrator
Emil Shimoun Nona8 January 2010
Bashar Matti Warda, C.SS.R.3 July 2010


  1. ^ Johnson, Doug. ""Chaldean church faith is Catholic. Ethnicity of our people is Chaldean" | Chaldean Nation". Retrieved 2021-04-01.
  2. ^ Iraqi cardinal-to-be says he is symbol of national unity[permanent dead link], uk.news.yahoo.com; accessed 7 February 2015.
  3. ^ Allen Jr., John L. (17 October 2007). "Complete List of New Cardinals". National Catholic Reporter. Retrieved 24 June 2018. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  4. ^ "Titular Churches of the new Cardinals of the Roman Catholic Church". Office of Papal Liturgical Celebrations. 24 November 2007. Archived from the original on 28 July 2016. Retrieved 24 June 2018.
  5. ^ "Iraqi among pope's new cardinals". Al Jazeera. 24 November 2007. Retrieved 24 June 2018. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  6. ^ "Rinunce e Nomine, 19.13.2012" (Press release) (in Italian). Holy See Press Office. 19 December 2012. Retrieved 24 June 2018. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  7. ^ a b c Glatz, Carol (17 October 2007). "Pope acknowledges Iraq's beleaguered Catholics by naming cardinal". Catholic News Service. Archived from the original on 13 November 2007.

External links[edit]

Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Raphael I Bidawid
Patriarch of Babylon
of the Chaldean Catholic Church

Succeeded by
Louis Raphaël I Sako