Carlos Osorio, new archbishop of Madrid

Author: The world – Digital edition. Jose Manuel Vidal | Madrid

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is already a “Heavyweight” of the episcopate and is called to be one of the main leaders, if not the main, of the Spanish Church of the post-Rouco era. The Cantabrian Carlos Osoro Sierra, of 69 year old, today reaches ownership of the largest episcopal see in Spain and, probably, the last station of a dazzling career, that took him from Orense to Oviedo, from Asturias to Valencia and from the capital of Turia to the capital of Spain.

kindly, near, friendly and extraordinarily sociable, the people of Madrid are going to have an archbishop who seems tailor-made for them. serious and thoughtful, when it has to be, but cheerful and outgoing always. He has words of affection for any faithful and especially cultivates closeness and friendship with his priests., knowing that they are his first and main collaborators. With excellent theological preparation and without presuming to be intellectual, Osoro shows off a proverbial capacity for work and an unprecedented activity.

As bishop he is a “all terrain”, who likewise officiates a simple Eucharist in the last town of the diocese that meets with the most important businessmen or politicians of all walks of life. Why, although Don Carlos happens to be a moderate prelate, is a long way from the direct political involvement of his predecessor in Madrid. Osoro will get along with all parties and, at least publicly, will not choose any. As commanded by the memory of Cardinal Tarancón and the conciliar canons.

Because Osoro is a prelate who grew up as a priest in the wake of the Second Vatican Council and never resigned from it.. He always perfectly combined the evangelical demands with the autonomy of temporal realities. Maybe, because he was a teacher before he was a priest, literally speaking.

Born in Castaneda (Cantabria) the 16 May 1945, in a wealthy family, grade, among others, teacher studies, pedagogy and mathematics. And he even taught until he entered the Seminary for late vocations Colegio Mayor El Salvador de Salamanca to carry out, at the Pontifical University, Philosophy and Theology studies. He was ordained a priest 29 July 1973 in Santander, diocese in which he developed his priestly ministry.

During the first two years of priesthood he worked in parish ministry and teaching. But soon he went on to hold various positions in the Curia, up to the highest ranking position. In 1976 appointed Vicar General, position in which he remained until 1993. further, in 1977 was appointed Rector of the Mount Corbán Seminary (Santander), position he held until he acceded to the miter.

The 22 February 1997 was appointed Bishop of Orense, the diocese in which he was trained as a bishop. And only five years later, the 7 of January of 2002 was appointed Archbishop of Oviedo. In asturias, inherited a diocese made in the image and likeness of its previous holder, the charismatic and progressive Gabino Díaz Merchán. But, despite some conflicts with more media resonance than real depth, knew how to seize its reins and even convened a Synod.

Your worth is recognized by your peers and, in fact, He has been holding important positions in the Episcopal Conference for years. First, the bishops chose him to head the sensitive Clergy Commission for two trienniums. It is, years, member of the Executive Committee, the highest decision-making body of the episcopate. Y, in the last episcopal elections he was elected vice-president of the Episcopal Conference with 46 first ballot votes, followed, far away, by Monsignor Asenjo, Archbishop of Seville, with 19.

He is usually pigeonholed among the members of the conservative sector of the hierarchy, but, then, it would be a very moderate conservative, with an excellent waist and with an enormous capacity for dialogue. A conservative passed through the sieve of Pope Francis, who affectionately calls him “the pilgrim”.

He likes to walk and drive his own car. He is a skilled and fast driver. He also loves to visit the mothers of his priests or show up unexpectedly at the house of a priest who he knows is having a bad time.. On his shoulders rests, now, the weight of the largest and most important Spanish diocese and the task of putting the Spanish Church in tune with the spring of Francis.