Cardinal Carlo Caffara, Archbishop emeritus of Bologna (Italy), was born on 1 June 1938 in Samboseto di Busseto, Italy. He was ordained a priest on 2 July 1961 and holds a doctorate in canon law from the Pontifical Gregorian University and a diploma of specialization in moral theology from the Pontifical Alfonsian Academy.
Cardinal Caffara began his ministry as parochial vicar of the Cathedral of Fidenza as well as professor of moral theology at the seminary of Parma and Fidenza. He also taught medical ethics at the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart in Rome, and in August 1974 Pope Paul VI nominated him member of the International Theological Commission. In September 1978 he participated as representative of the Holy See at the First World Congress on human sterility and artificial procreation held in Venice.
In 1980, he was nominated an expert at the Synod of Bishops on Matrimony and the Family, and in January 1981, Pope John Paul II appointed him as founder and president of the John Paul II Pontifical Institute for Studies on Marriage and the Family.
He served as consultor of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith for five years beginning in 1983. He also took part in a study on genetic engineering instituted by the health ministry in Italy.
In 1988 he founded the John Paul II Pontifical Institute for Studies on Marriage and the Family in Washington D.C., and thereafter in Mexico and Spain. He holds an honorary doctorate in Christian Literature from the Franciscan University in Steubenville, Ohio.
On 8 September 1995 he was appointed Archbishop of Ferrara-Comacchio.
Since 16 December 2003 to 27 October 2015 he was Archbishop of Bologna.
Appointed by Pope Francis, he participated in the III Extraordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops (October 2014) on The Pastoral Challenges of the Family in the Context of Evangelization and in the XIV Ordinary General Assembly on The Vocation and Mission of the Family in the Church and Contemporary World (October 2015).
He participated in the conclave of March 2013, which elected Pope Francis.
Created and proclaimed Cardinal by Benedict XVI in the consistory of 24 March 2006, of the Title of San Giovanni Battista dei Fiorentini (St. John the Baptist of the Florentines).
Cardinal Carlo Caffara died on 6 September 2017.