|Birth: ||Jan. 15, 1922|
|Death: ||Feb. 20, 2006|
American Prelate, Vatican Financial Head. His eighteen year stewardship of the Vatican Bank did enormous harm to the reputation of the Catholic Church and himself as well. Banco Ambrosiano was the largest private bank in Italy which had close ties to the Vatican. The head of Banco Ambrosiano funneled more than one billion dollars into dummy accounts set up in various foreign countries. Its Chairman, Roberto Calvi, was found hanging from a bridge in London. Investigation found Mafia connections although his death was ruled a suicide. The multi-billion dollar financial collapse led directly to Archbishop Paul Marcinkus and arrest warrants were issued by the Italian government charging accessory to fraudulent bankruptcy. He avoided arrest while refusing to answer questions citing diplomatic immunity. The Archbishop until his death denied wrongdoing, but his malfeasance put a vast dent in the Vatican treasury. The churches role was never officially determined but the Vatican denying involvement, paid $240 million dollars to creditors of the Ambrosiano bank. Paul Casimir Marcinkus was born in the Chicago suburb of Cicero, the youngest of five children born to Lithuanian immigrants, his father a window washer. He studied for the priesthood at Quigley Preparatory Seminary and finished at St Mary of the Lake Seminary, Mundelein, Illinois leading to ordination in 1947. He briefly was an assistant at a Chicago parish before heading to Rome to study canon law at the Pontifical Gregorian University. A temporary holiday relief job at the Vatican Secretariat of State turned into a permanent job. He would go on to serve a 30 year stint in the Curia of the church which led to becoming secretary of the Institute for Religious Works in 1969 and then president of the Vatican bank in 1971. His appointment was strictly political, based on his friendship with Pope Paul VI as he had absolutely no banking expertise. His native English not withstanding, the Archbishop was fluent in Italian, French, Spanish and Lithuanian and was very skillful in organizing papal trips abroad. After the banking scandal, he largely let a secluded life living in the Vatican while avoiding comment and arrest. The Italian court eventually ruled he indeed had diplomatic immunity. Leaving the Vatican in 1990, he retired choosing to live in a gated golf course retirement community in Sun City, Arizona. He continued to serve the Phoenix Archdiocese with priestly duties. He was an unusual chain smoker as he simultaneously smoked a pipe along with a cigarette. He suffered from severe emphysema and was found dead in his modest residence at age 84. A memorial mass was held at St. Clement of Rome Catholic Church in Sun City, Arizona where he said mass several times a week before his death. His remains were transferred to Chicago for final disposition. A visitation and mass were celebrated at Holy Name Cathedral by Cardinal Francis George with interment beside his parents at St. Casimir Cemetery, the burial place of Catholic Lithuanians in Chicago. Legacy...because of his immense size, over six feet tall, with athletic abilities proficient in tennis and golf, the Archbishop often acted as a body guard during papal trip to various countries and was a familiar sight accompanying the Pope. He was instrumental in saving the live of Paul VI when a deranged Bolivian painter lunged at him from a reception line with a knife at the Manila airport during a visit to the Philippines in 1970. During the struggle, he was disarmed and held for authorities by Archbishop Marcinkus. Although blood was visible on the tunic of the Pope, Vatican authorities denied any injury. Marcinkus was portrayed by Rutgers Hauler in an Italian film, called "IL Blancher I Do, released in 2002. A book published in 1984, "In God's Name," by David Yallop, explored the guilt of the Archbishop and determined he was a criminal who should have served a long prison term for financial crimes. In a bit of trivia...He was nicknamed the "Gorilla" because of his burley, physical appearance. (bio by: Donald Greyfield (inactive))
Saint Casimir Catholic Cemetery
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Originally Created by: Donald Greyfield (inacti...
Record added: Feb 26, 2006
Find A Grave Memorial# 13445283
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Added: Feb. 20, 2015
Requiem Šternam dona eis, Domine; In memoria Šterna erit justus, ab auditione mala non timebit!|
Added: Jun. 1, 2014
MISS YOU AND KNOW YOU ARE AT PEACE. FOND MEMORIES OF YOU WHEN I WAS A CHILD. CIAO, FOR NOW!|
Added: Apr. 20, 2014
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