José S. Palma

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José S. Palma

Archbishop of Cebu
Archbishop José S. Palma, celebrating the Novus Ordo Mass in Ad Orientem at Oratory of Our Lady of Sorrows, circa 2023.
ChurchLatin Church
Appointed15 October 2010
Installed13 January 2011
PredecessorRicardo Vidal
Ordination21 August 1976
Consecration13 January 1998
by Gian Vincenzo Moreni
Personal details
Born (1950-03-19) 19 March 1950 (age 73)
Previous post(s)
Alma materSt. Vincent Ferrer Seminary
St. Joseph Regional Seminary
Pontifical and Royal University of Santo Tomas
Pontifical University of Saint Thomas Aquinas
MottoLatin: Non nobis Domine ("Not to us O Lord", Psalm 115:1)
SignatureJosé S. Palma's signature
Coat of armsJosé S. Palma's coat of arms
Styles of
José S. Palma
Reference styleThe Most Reverend
Spoken styleYour Excellency
Religious styleArchbishop

José Serofia Palma O.P. (born 19 March 1950) is a Filipino prelate and a professed member of the Dominican Order[1] who is currently serving as the Archbishop of Cebu since 15 October 2010.[2] He had previously served as Archbishop of Palo in Leyte. He also served as president of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines from 2011 to 2013.

Early life[edit]

Palma was born in Dingle, Iloilo, in the Archdiocese of Jaro. He studied philosophy at St. Vincent Ferrer Seminary and theological studies at the St. Joseph Regional Seminary. He received his licentiate in Sacred Theology at the Pontifical and Royal University of Santo Tomas in Manila, and was ordained a priest for the Archdiocese of Jaro on 21 August 1976.[3]

Palma earned a doctorate from the Pontifical University of Saint Thomas, Angelicum in Rome in 1987 with a dissertation entitled Death as an Act: A Dialogue in Eschatology with Contemporary Theologians.


After a year as assistant priest at the Jaro Cathedral, he taught at his alma mater, St. Vincent Ferrer Seminary. After his studies in Rome, he became rector of the seminary until he was appointed rector of the major seminary of the Metropolitan Province of Jaro-the St. Joseph Regional Seminary, in 1988. Meanwhile, he also held various positions in several diocesan commissions. In 1997 he was made parish priest of the Parish of St Anthony of Padua in Barotac Nuevo, Iloilo (Archdiocese of Jaro). On 28 November 1997, Pope John Paul II appointed him Titular Bishop of Vazari Diddi and Auxiliary Bishop of Cebu. He was consecrated on 13 January 1998. Exactly a year later, he was made Bishop-Ordinary of the See of Calbayog.

As archbishop[edit]

Archbishop of Palo[edit]

On 18 March 2006, Palma was appointed Archbishop of Palo by Pope Benedict XVI, succeeding Archbishop-Emeritus Pedro R. Dean.

Archbishop of Cebu[edit]

On 15 October 2010 he was appointed Archbishop of Cebu, replacing Cardinal Ricardo Vidal, who had been archbishop for 29 years. He was installed on 13 January 2011 at the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral.[4] He served as vice-president of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines from 1 December 2009 until 11 July 2011 on which he was elected president.

In 2018 he joined the Order of Preachers.[5]

Pope Francis named him a member of the Pontifical Council for Culture on 11 November 2019.[6]


  1. ^ "Archbishop Palma Joins Dominican Order". CBCPNews. 26 January 2018. Retrieved 11 March 2022.
  2. ^ "Rinuncia dell'Arcivescovo Metropolita di Cebu (Filippine) e Nomina del Successore". (in Italian). 15 October 2010. Archived from the original on 28 July 2011.
  3. ^ "Metropolitan Archdiocese of Cebu, Philippines". Retrieved 26 May 2022.
  4. ^ Parco, Bernadette A.; Vestil, Justin K. (13 January 2011). "Joy and Sadness Greet Changing of the Guard". Sun.Star Cebu. Archived from the original on 19 March 2012. Retrieved 14 January 2011.
  5. ^ "Archbishop Palma joins Dominican Order". CBCPNews. 26 January 2018. Retrieved 18 January 2022.
  6. ^ "Resignations and Appointments, 11.11.2019" (Press release). Holy See Press Office. 11 November 2019. Retrieved 11 November 2019.

External links[edit]

Catholic Church titles
Preceded by Archbishop of Palo
Succeeded by
Preceded by Archbishop of Cebu
Preceded by
Nereo P. Odchimar
CBCP President
Succeeded by