- Anastasio Ballestrero
cardinal name=Anastasio Cardinal Ballestrero
Anastasio Alberto Cardinal Ballestrero, OCD (
October 3, 1913— June 21, 1998) was an Italian prelateof the Roman Catholic Church. He served as Archbishop of Turin from 1977 to 1989, and was elevated to the cardinalate in 1979.
Alberto Ballestrero was born in
Genoa, the eldest of the five children of Giacomo and Antonietta (née Daffunchio) Ballestrero. Baptized on November 2, 1913, he attended an elementary school in Genoa from 1919 to 1922. Ballestrero, after enrolling at "Collegio Belimbau" in 1922, was confirmed on May 3, 1923and received his first Communionon the following June 21. On October 2, 1924, he entered the Discalced Carmelite seminaryin Varazze. Ballestrero then joined that religious order, taking the habit on October 12, 1928and the name of Anastasio del Santissimo Rosario. He was later transferred to the Genoese conventof "S. Anna" in September 1932 to study philosophyand theology.
Ballestrero suffered from a life-threatening
infectiontwo years before making his solemn profession on October 5, 1934. After receiving the subdiaconate and diaconate in 1935, Ballestrero was ordained to the priesthood in the San Lorenzo Cathedral on June 6, 1936. He began teaching philosophyat the "studentato" of Genoa-S. Anna in August 1936, and initiated a preaching apostolate in a Genoese hospitalin January 1937. Ballestrero was priorof the "S. Anna" convent from April 22, 1945to 1948, and was again elected prior on May 7, 1954, after becoming provincial of Liguriaon April 3, 1948. Before attending the Second Vatican Councilfrom 1962 to 1965, he was twice elected as general provost of the Discalced Carmelites, on April 9, 1955and later on April 21, 1961, remaining in that position until May 20, 1967.
December 21, 1973, Ballestrero was appointed Archbishop of Bariby Pope Paul VI. He received his episcopal consecration on February 2, 1974from Sebastiano Cardinal Baggio, with Bishops Michele Mincuzzi and Enrico Romolo Compagnone, OCD, serving as co-consecrators, in Rome. Ballestrero was later named Archbishop of Turin on August 1, 1977. After being elected Vice-President of Italian Episcopal Conference on May 25, 1978, he was its Presidentfrom May 18, 1979to July 3, 1985. Pope John Paul IIcreated him Cardinal Priest of "S. Maria sopra Minerva" in the consistoryof June 30, 1979. In reference to abortion, Ballestrero once declared that the Church must "never renounce its mission of evangelization and education of the human conscience" [TIME Magazine. [http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,954796-3,00.html Not Yet Hale, but Hearty] June 1, 1981] . He resigned as Turin's archbishop on January 31, 1989, and subsequently retired to the monasteryof "S. Croce" in La Spezia.
Ballestrero died at his residence in La Spezia, at age 84. He is buried in the church
cryptof the same Carmelite monastery in Varazze that he entered in 1924.
hroud of Turin
The Cardinal had initially agreed to scientific testing being performed on the
Shroud of Turinin 1978, but refused to permit radiocarbon datingtesting as it required removing samples from the shroud [TIME Magazine. [http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,968744-1,00.html Debunking the Shroud of Turin] October 24, 1988] . After technical improvements made it possible to use samples the size of postage stamps, however, Ballestrero permitted samples to be cut in April 1988, which he personally supervised [TIME Magazine. [http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,988184-4,00.html Science and the Shroud] April 20, 1998] .
Following the radiocarbon dating tests, Ballestrero announced on
October 13of that same year, that the shroud was dated from the Middle Agesand thus not the actual burial cloth of Christ; although these tests were later believed to be invalid due to erroneous sampling.
*Ballestrero visited all 350 Carmelite convents and 850 Carmelite monasteries in the world except
Hungary, which refused him entrance into the country.
*He once served as President of the Union of Superior Generals.
* [http://www.fiu.edu/~mirandas/bios-b.htm#Ballestrero Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church]
* [http://www.catholic-hierarchy.org/bishop/bballes.html Catholic-Hierarchy]
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