Cardinal Willem Jacobus Eijk, Metropolitan Archbishop of Utrecht, was born on 22 June 1953 in Duivendrecht, The Netherlands.
He was ordained a priest on 1 June 1985. He studied medicine and holds doctorates in medical bioethics research and in philosophy. He has taught ethics and moral theology and served on the executive board of the association for pro-life doctors in The Netherlands. He was co-founder and president of an association which organizes conferences and publications on medical ethics. From 1997-2000 he was part of the International Theological Commission.
On 17 July 1999, he was appointed Bishop of Groningen-Leeuwarden and received episcopal ordination on 6 November 1999.
On 11 December 2007, he was appointed Archbishop of Utrecht.
After serving in various capacities in the Dutch Bishops’ Conference, he was elected President in 2011.
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 18 February 2012, of the Title of San Calisto (St. Callistus).