Johannes de Jong

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His Eminence
Johannes de Jong
Cardinal, Archbishop of Utrecht
Primate of the Netherlands
Jan de Jong (1953).jpg
Jan de Jong (1953)
Archdiocese Utrecht
Installed 6 February 1936
Term ended 8 September 1955
Predecessor Johannes Henricus Gerardus Jansen
Successor Bernardus Johannes Alfrink
Ordination 15 August 1908
Consecration 12 September 1935
Created Cardinal 18 February 1946
Rank Cardinal Priest
Personal details
Birth name Johannes de Jong
Born 10 September 1885
Nes, Netherlands
Died 8 September 1955 (1955-09-09) (aged 69)
Amersfoort, Netherlands
Buried St. Barbara's Cemetery Utrecht, Netherlands
Nationality Dutch
Denomination Roman Catholic
Coat of arms Johannes de Jong's coat of arms

Johannes de Jong (September 10, 1885 – September 8, 1955) was a Dutch Cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church. He served as Archbishop of Utrecht from 1936 until his death, and was elevated to the cardinalate in 1946 by Pope Pius XII.

Early life and ordination[edit]

Johannes de Jong was born in Nes, a village on the island of Ameland, as the eldest of seven children of Jan de Jong, a baker, and his wife Trijntje Mosterman. After attending the minor seminary in Culemborg from 1898 to 1904, de Jong then studied at the Seminary of Rijsenburg for four years.

He was ordained to the priesthood on August 15, 1908, and further studied at the Pontifical Gregorian University and the Angelicum in Rome, obtaining his doctorates in philosophy and theology.


De Jong did pastoral work in Amersfoort, including work with the Sisters of Mercy, until 1914, when he was made a professor at the Rijsenburg seminary on November 6. Becoming the seminary's rector on August 14, 1931, he was named a canon of the cathedral of Utrecht in 1933.

Bishop and Archbishop[edit]

On August 3, 1935, de Jong was appointed Coadjutor Archbishop of Utrecht and Titular Archbishop of Rhusium. He received his episcopal consecration on the following September 12 from Bishop Pieter Hopmans, with Bishops Arnold Diepen and Johannes Smit serving as co-consecrators, in St. Catherine's Cathedral. De Jong succeeded Johannes Henricus Gerardus Jansen as Archbishop of Utrecht and thus Primate of the Netherlands. He was also the first archbishop in the Netherlands with a university degree since the restoration of the Dutch Catholic hierarchy in the middle of the 19th century.

He said he didn't want to be another Theodor Innitzer, his collegue in Vienna with fascist sympathies. De Jong ordered his priests to refuse the sacraments to Nazi Dutchmen.[1] During the Second World War, he was one of the major leaders against the Nazi occupation of Netherlands. On July 26, 1942 Dutch bishops, including Archbishop Johannes de Jong, issued a decree that openly condemned Nazi deportations of Dutch workers and Jews. The Nazis retaliated by seizing over 40,000 Catholics of Jewish descent, including Edith Stein.[2] The Vatican used the Netherlands' experience to explain its silence during the years of the Holocaust. [3]After the German retaliation, Sister Pasqualina Lehnert, Pius XII's housekeeper and confidante, said the Pope was convinced that while the Bishop’s protest cost forty thousand lives, a protest by him would mean at least two hundred thousand innocent lives that he was not ready to sacrifice. While politicians, generals, and dictators might gamble with the lives of people, a Pope could not.[4]


Styles of
Johannes de Jong
Coat of arms of Johannes de Jong.svg
Reference style His Eminence
Spoken style Your Eminence
Informal style Cardinal
See Utrecht

De Jong was created Cardinal Priest of S. Clemente by Pope Pius XII in the consistory of February 18, 1946, but could not travel to Rome for the ceremony as he was recovering from a car accident.[5] However, on October 12 of that year, the Dutch prelate went to Castel Gandolfo to receive his red hat from Pope Pius. In 1951, de Jong, who was the first resident Dutch cardinal since the Protestant Reformation, had to leave the administration of the archdiocese to his coadjutor, Bernardus Johannes Alfrink. Meanwhile, de Jong retired to the same house where he had lived during his early priestly ministry in Amersfoort.


De Jong died in his sleep after a long illness in Amersfoort, two days before his 70th birthday.[6] He is buried at St. Barbara cemetery in the court of St. Catherine's Cathedral.


  1. ^ "Pius XII: The Holocaust and the Cold War", Michael Phayer, p. 59, Indiana University Press, 2008, ISBN 978-0-253-34930-9
  2. ^ Phayer, The Catholic Church and the Holocaust, p.54
  3. ^ Phayer, p.55
  4. ^ [1][permanent dead link]NEVER AGAIN AN EXAMINATION OF CATHOLIC-JEWISH RELATIONS IN LIGHT OF THE HOLOCAUST (Trevor Fleck JUPS Senior Thesis Georgetown University April 1, 2006 ). Accessed: 30 November 2012.
  5. ^ TIME Magazine. On the Roads to Rome February 18, 1946
  6. ^ TIME Magazine. Milestones September 19, 1955

External links[edit]

Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Johannes Henricus Gerardus Jansen
Archbishop of Utrecht
Succeeded by
Bernardus Johannes Alfrink