Cardinal Juan Sandoval Iñiguez, Archbishop emeritus of Guadalajara (Mexico) was born on 28 March 1933 in Yahualica, Jalisco, Diocese of San Juan de los Lagos, Mexico. He grew up in a Christian family of 12, of which nine are still alive. One of his brothers, José, is a Guadalupe Missionary in Korea at the present time.
After his compulsory education at the 'Amado Nervo' Institute in Yahualica, he entered Guadalajara seminary in 1945, at the age of 12. At the end of his first course in philosophy, he was sent to Rome in 1952 to continue his studies at the Pontifical Gregorian University, where, after 8 years of study, he obtained a degree in philosophy and a doctorate in dogmatic theology with his thesis: The theology of preaching in St John of Avila. He was ordained priest on 27 October 1957, on the solemnity of Christ the King.
He returned to Guadalajara in 1961 and was appointed as spiritual director of the first and second Latin course pupils at the diocesan seminary. At the end of this academic year, he was named their Prefect of Discipline. He was subsequently appointed Prefect of the Faculty of Philosophy and teacher of various subjects in the same faculty.
He then went to the village of Tapalpa, as Prefect of the students in the propaedeutic course at the same seminary of Guadalajara, a post he held for four years.
In September 1971, he was named vice-rector at Guadalajara seminary with the role of rector and on 22 August 1980 he was appointed rector.
In addition to these duties, he has been a member of the Presbyterial Council of which he was twice president. He was also a member of the governing organ of the Archdiocese and the diocesan commission for the Clergy.
On 3 March1988 he was appointed coadjutor Bishop of Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua, and received his episcopal ordination in this city on 30 April the same year. On 11 July 1992 he became Bishop of Ciudad Juárez.
Pope John Paul II named him Archbishop of Guadalajara on 21 April 1994, and he took possession of the Diocese the following 19 May.
Relator general of the Special Assembly for America of the Synod of Bishops (1997).
President Delegate of the 11th Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, The Eucharist: Source and Summit of the Life and Mission of the Church (October 2005).
Archbishop emeritus of Guadalajara, 7 December 2011.
He participated in the conclave of April 2005, which elected Pope Benedict XVI and in the conclave of March 2013, which elected Pope Francis.
Created and proclaimed Cardinal by St. John Paul II in the consistory of 26 November 1994, of the Title of Nostra Signora di Guadalupe e S. Filippo martire in Via Aurelia (Our Lady of Guadalupe and St. Philip the Martyr on Via Aurelia).