Angelo Sodano

cardinal of the Catholic Church

Angelo Raffaele Sodano (23 November 1927 – 27 May 2022) was an Italian Cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church. He was Dean of the College of Cardinals from 2005 to 2019. He was born in Isola d'Asti, Piedmont.

Angelo Sodano in March 2016

He was Cardinal Secretary of State from 1991 to 2006, under both popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI. On 27 April 2005, he was elected to succeed Benedict XVI as Dean of the College of Cardinals by his fellow Cardinal Bishops. Sodano was the first person since 1828 to serve as Dean and Secretary of State at the same time.

On 22 June 2006, Benedict XVI accepted Sodano's resignation as Secretary of State on 15 September 2006. He was replaced by Tarcisio Bertone, then Archbishop of Genoa.

On 21 December 2019, the Legion of Christ discovered that Sodano was the one who led efforts to cover up the reports of abuse when he was serving as Secretariat of State.[1][2] Sodano was accused of seeking a deal to bury documents detailing abuse. The same day, Pope Francis accepted Sodano's resignation as Dean of the College of Cardinals.[3]

Sodano died of COVID-19 on 27 May 2022 at a hospital in Rome, Italy at the age of 94.[4]


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