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Serafim Fernandes de Araújo

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Serafim Fernandes de Araújo
Archbishop of Belo Horizonte
ChurchRoman Catholic Church
ArchdioceseBelo Horizonte
SeeBelo Horizonte
Appointed5 February 1986
Term ended28 January 2004
PredecessorJoão Resende Costa
SuccessorWalmor Oliveira de Azevedo
Other post(s)Cardinal Priest of San Luigi Maria Grignion de Montfort (1998–2019)
Ordination12 March 1949
by Luigi Traglia
Consecration7 May 1959
by José Newton de Almeida Baptista
Created cardinal21 February 1998
by Pope John Paul II
RankCardinal priest
Personal details
Born(1924-08-13)13 August 1924
Died8 October 2019(2019-10-08) (aged 95)
Belo Horizonte, Brazil
Previous post(s)
Alma materPontifical Gregorian University
MottoSeraphim juxta eum
('Seraphim next to him', Isaiah 6:2)
Styles of
Serafim Fernandes de Araújo
Reference styleHis Eminence
Spoken styleYour Eminence
Informal styleCardinal
SeeBelo Horizonte

Serafim Fernandes de Araújo (Brazilian Portuguese: [seɾɐˈfĩ feʁˈnɐ̃dʒiz dʒi ɐɾɐˈuʒu]; 13 August 1924 – 8 October 2019) was a Brazilian prelate of the Catholic Church who served as Archbishop of Belo Horizonte from 1986 to 2004. He was made a cardinal of the Catholic Church by Pope John Paul II in 1998.


Araújo was born in Minas Novas, in the northeast of the Brazilian state of Minas Gerais, and grew up in nearby Itamarandiba. He studied at the seminary of Diamantina from the age of twelve, graduating in humanities in 1942 and philosophy in 1944,[1] later continuing his studies from 1949 until 1951 at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, where he earned licentiates in theology and canon law.[1][2]

He was ordained on 12 March 1949 in the Archbasilica of Saint John Lateran in Rome. Upon returning to Brazil in 1951, he worked in pastoral ministry in Gouveia until 1957 and later in Curvelo until 1959.[1] Between 1951 and 1959, Araújo was also chaplain to the 3rd Military Battalion of the Minas Gerais military police, professor of canon law at the provincial seminary of Diamantina, director of religious education for the Archdiocese of Diamantina, as well as a teacher in several local schools.[2]

On 19 January 1959, Araújo was appointed an auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Belo Horizonte by Pope John XXIII, with the titular see of Verinopolis, receiving episcopal consecration on 7 May of that year.[3] He served as rector of the Pontifical Catholic University of Minas Gerais from 1960 until 1981, and participated in the Second Vatican Council between 1962 and 1965.[2] His ministry was focused on education and social communications – for several years, he was in charge of a daily radio programme entitled "A Palavra de Deus" ('The Word of God'), broadcast by Rádio América, as well as of a Sunday television programme.[2]

Araújo participated in the general conferences of the Episcopal Conference of Latin America held in Puebla in 1979 and Santo Domingo in 1992; he served as one of three co-presidents for the latter conference.[3] He was named the coadjutor archbishop of Belo Horizonte on 22 November 1982 by Pope John Paul II, succeeding João Resende Costa as archbishop on 5 February 1986.[1] From 1991 to 1995, he served a four-year term as Vice-President of the Episcopal Conference of Brazil. Araújo was created a cardinal by Pope John Paul II in the consistory of 21 February 1998, and assigned the titular church of San Luigi Maria Grignion de Montfort.[3] He retired as Archbishop of Belo Horizonte on 28 January 2004 and was succeeded by Walmor Oliveira de Azevedo.[1]

Araújo died on 8 October 2019 in Belo Horizonte due to complications from pneumonia.[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f "Cardeal dom Serafim Fernandes de Araújo morre aos 95 anos em Belo Horizonte". Globo (in Portuguese). Retrieved 8 October 2019.
  2. ^ a b c d "Brazilian Cardinal Serafim Fernandes de Araújo dies aged 95". Vatican News. 9 October 2019. Retrieved 9 October 2019.
  3. ^ a b c "Araújo Card. Serafim Fernandes de". Holy See Press Office. Archived from the original on 4 September 2017. Retrieved 9 October 2019.
Catholic Church titles
Preceded by Archbishop of Belo Horizonte
Succeeded by
Preceded by Cardinal Priest of San Luigi Maria Grignion de Montfort
25 February 1998 − 8 October 2019
Succeeded by