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PIZZABALLA Card. Pierbattista, O.F.M. 


His Beatitude Cardinal Pierbattista Pizzaballa, Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, was born in Cologno al Serio, Bergamo, Italy, on 21 April 1965. He attended Le Grazie middle schools and seminary in Rimini and was awarded his high school diploma at the Archepiscopal Seminary of Ferrara (June 1984). He entered the order of Friars Minor on 5 September 1984 in Ferrara (Santo Spirito) and spent the year of the novitiate in the Franciscan Shrine of La Verna (Arezzo, Italy). He gave his provisional vows in Verna on 7 September 1985. In Bologna, at the Church of Sant’Antonio, he gave his solemn vows on 10 October 1989, and on 15 September 1990, he was ordained a priest.

After a period in Rome, he transferred to the Holy Land, to Jerusalem, in October 1990. After his philosophical and theological studies, he was awarded a licentiate in biblical theology from the Studium Biblicum Franciscanum in Jerusalem. His Beatitude Pizzaballa speaks Italian, modern Hebrew, and English. In 1995, he edited the publication of the Roman Missal in Hebrew, and has translated various liturgical texts into Hebrew for the Catholic communities in Israel.

On 2 July 1999 he formally entered the service of the Custody of the Holy Land. He held the role of vicar general of the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem for the pastoral care of Catholics of Hebrew expression in Israel. Since 2008 he has served as consultor in the Commission for the Relations with the Jews of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. He made his solemn entrance in Saint Saviour on 2 June 2004, the Holy Sepulchre on 3 June 2004, Bethlehem on 4 June 2004, and Nazareth on 9 June of the same year. Pierbattista Pizzaballa was appointed Custos of the Holy Land for the first time in May 2004, for a six-year period. In May 2010 he was reconfirmed by the Minister General of the Order of Friars Minor, for another three-year mandate, and then in June 2013 for the following three years.

On 24 June 2016, His Holiness Pope Francis appointed Father Pierbattista Pizzaballa as apostolic administrator of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem sede vacante, until the appointment of a new Patriarch. On 15 July 2016, during the meeting of the College of Consultors of the Latin Patriarchate, His Beatitude Patriarch Emeritus Fouad Twal proceeded to transfer his powers to Archbishop Pierbattista Pizzaballa, who was appointed apostolic administrator of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem, as per Pope Francis' decree.

The episcopal ordination took place in September 2016 in Bergamo, Italy.

On 24 October 2020, Pope Francis appointed Archbishop Pierbattista Pizzaballa as the new Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem.

Created and proclaimed Cardinal by Pope Francis in the consistory of 30 September 2023, of the Title of Sant'Onofrio.

Member of: 

  • Dicasteries: for the Eastern Churches; for Promoting Christian Unity.