Archbishop Paul Cremona, O.P.
Archbishop of Malta
|25 Jan 1946||Born||Valletta|
|29 Sep 1967||21.7||Solemn Professed||Member of Order of Friars Preachers|
|22 Mar 1969||23.2||Ordained Priest||Priest of Order of Friars Preachers|
|2 Dec 2006||60.9||Appointed||Archbishop of Malta|
|26 Jan 2007||61.0||Ordained Bishop||Archbishop of Malta|
|18 Oct 2014||68.8||Resigned||Archbishop of Malta|
|Episcopal Lineage / Apostolic Succession:
Mgr Cremona was born in Valletta on January 25, 1946, to Joseph and Josephine nee Cauchi. He has two siblings: an elder brother and a younger sister. He was educated at the Montesseori School in Valletta and at the Lyceum in Ħamrun.
September 1962, Fr Cremona joined the Dominican Order, and was professed on
September 29, 1963. He studied philosophy and theology at the
College of St Thomas Aquinas
at the Dominican priory at Rabat, and was ordained as priest on March 22, 1969.
his ordination, Mgr Cremona was sent to follow higher studies in Moral Theology
at the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas (Angelicum) in Rome where, in
1973, he graduated Doctor in Theology presenting the thesis The Concept of Peace
in Pope John XXIII.
1974 to 1980, he was Prior at the convent of Our Lady of the Grotto at
Rabat . He was re-elected to
the same office in 1997 and served up to 2003. In 1981, he was chosen Provincial
of the Maltese Dominicans, an office he held for two four-year terms.
1989 he was appointed parish priest of Our Lady of Fatima in Gwardamangia, Pietà
where he served until 1993; he then became responsible for the formation of
Dominican novices and students at Rabat, an office he again held between 2004
and 2005. In 2005, Mgr Cremona become parish priest of Jesus of Nazareth in
Cremona held other offices in the Archdiocese, including Archbishop's Delegate
for Consecrated Life, assistant spiritual director at the Seminary at Tal-Virtù,
Rabat, member of the Presbyterial Council, and President of the Council
of Maltese Religious Major Superiors (KSMR).
Cremona used to be invited every year to preach Lenten sermons in different
parishes and churches. He has been sought regularly by a great number of
religious and lay people particularly by married couples, for spiritual
direction, and to hear Confessions.
has written a good number of books dealing with theology and spirituality,
including writings on the Creed and the Commandments and four books he wrote
jointly with Fr George Frendo, OP, now a bishop in
Cremona was announced as the new bishop-elect on December 2, 2006.
ordination took place on January 26 at the Cathedral of Saint John the Baptist
in Valletta. The Mass with the rites
of ordination was led by the outgoing Archbishop of Malta, Joseph Mercieca, who
was the principal consecrator, assisted by the Apostolic Nuncio Mgr Felix del
Blanco Prieto and Mgr George Frendo OP, a longtime friend of Mgr Cremona, and
Auxiliary Bishop of Tirana-Durres in Albania.
Hundreds of priests concelebrated, while two large tents were erected in the
city for the many who could not enter the Co-Cathedral.
the nomination of Mgr Cremona was made public on December 2, 2006, Apostolic
Nuncio Felix del Blanco Prieto announced to journalists and the Presbyterial
Council meeting at the Curia in Floriana: "Pope John Paul II was received
in Malta with unforgettable enthusiasm as 'the second [Saint] Paul'. Today as
per mandate of Pope Benedict XVI the diocese is being entrusted to another
The new Archbishop invoked Bishop Saint Augustine: "For you I am a Bishop but with you I am a Christian."
Archbishop Paul Cremona O.P. tendered his resignation as
the head of the Maltese Church on Saturday 18 October 2014. The
68-year-old archbishop wrote to Pope Francis requesting to step down. His
resignation as accepted by Pope Francis. Mgr Cremona was the first head of
the Church in Malta to step down before retirement age since the 19th
century when Bishop Publio Maria Sant resigned on 25 September 1857 due to
His term was a difficult one. He had to deal with growing religious indifference, cases of clerical sex abuse, the introduction of divorce, and in 2014 legislation putting gay partnerships on a par with marriage. Among the highlights of Mgr Cremona’s episcopate were the canonisation of Malta’s first saint Dun Ġorg Preca in June 2007 and Pope Benedict’s visit to Malta in April 2010.
Mgr Cremona acquired the title of Emeritus
Archbishop of Malta. In a letter addressed to Mgr Cremona, the Holy Father
thanked Archbishop Emeritus Cremona for his episcopal ministry, well known and
appreciated for its human warmth and spiritual proximity to the people of God.
The Holy Father, Pope Francis nominated His Lordship Mgr Charles J. Scicluna,
Titular Bishop of San Leone, as Apostolic Administrator sede vacante with
the authority to govern the Archdiocese of Malta until the new Archbishop of
Malta takes canonical possession of the Archdiocese. During the period in which
the Archiepiscopal See of Malta is vacant, ordinary pastoral ministry is
guaranteed under the leadership of the Apostolic Administrator, but all
innovative initiatives are to be put on hold for the new Archbishop to decide