Cardinal Prospero Grech, O.S.A.

Titular Archbishop of San Leone

Cardinal-Deacon of Santa Maria Goretti





Date Age Event Title
24 Dec 1925 BornVittoriosa (Birgu), Malta
8 Oct 1944 18.8ProfessedMember of Order of St. Augustin
25 Mar195024.3Ordained PriestPriest of Order of St. Augustine
21 Jan 2012 86.1AppointedTitular Archbishop of San Leone
8 Feb  201286.1Ordained BishopTitular Archbishop of San Leone
18 Feb  201286.2Elevated to CardinalCardinal-Deacon of S. Maria Goretti


  • Consistory - 2012: Created Cardinal (Non-Voting)      



Episcopal Lineage / Apostolic  Succession:       


    • Cardinal Prosper Grech, OSA (2012)
    • Archbishop Paul Cremona, O.P. (2007)
    • Archbishop Joseph Mercieca (1974)
    • Archbishop Michael Gonzi + (1924)
    • Archbishop Mauro Caruana, O.S.B. + (1915)
    • Rafael Cardinal Merry del Val y Zulueta + (1900)
    • Mariano Cardinal Rampolla del Tindaro + (1882)
    • Edward Henry Cardinal Howard + (1872)
    • Carlo Cardinal Sacconi + (1851)
    • Giacomo Filippo Cardinal Fransoni + (1822)
    • Pietro Francesco Cardinal Galeffi + (1819)
    • Alessandro Cardinal Mattei + (1777)
    • Bernardino Cardinal Giraud + (1767)
    • Pope Carlo della Torre Rezzonico + (1743)
    • Pope Prospero Lorenzo Lambertini + (1724)
    • Pope Pietro Francesco (Vincenzo Maria) Orsini de Gravina, O.P. + (1675)
    • Paluzzo Cardinal Paluzzi Altieri Degli Albertoni + (1666)
    • Ulderico Cardinal Carpegna + (1630)
    • Luigi Cardinal Caetani + (1622)
    • Ludovico Cardinal Ludovisi + (1621)
    • Archbishop Galeazzo Sanvitale + (1604)
    • Girolamo Cardinal Bernerio, O.P. + (1586)
    • Giulio Antonio Cardinal Santorio + (1566)
    • Scipione Cardinal Rebiba +




December 24, 1925, Vittoriosa (Birgu), Malta. Son of Vincent Grech and Amelia Gatt. His baptismal name was Stanley. His first name is also listed as Prospero.


Primary education at Mater Boni Consilii school, Paola; and at St. Catherine's, Sliema; secondary education at Malta Lyceum; then, went to the University of London; and later, in 1942, to the Royal University of Malta, where he started studying medicine but gave it up during the first year; then, served as anti-aircraft gunner of the University Home Guard (RMA) during the Second World War. Entered the Order of Saint Augustine (Augustinian) in the province of Malta in 1943; professed, October 8, 1944; took the name Prosper; he studied philosophy for two years at St. Mark's Priory, Rabat, Malta; sent to Rome in 1946, he studied theology for four years at Collegio Internazionale Agostiniano S. Monica; in 1951, he attended a summer course on educational psychology at the University of Fribourg, Switzerland, and obtained a diploma; he obtained a licentiate in theology at the Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome; and in 1953, he earned a doctorate in theology from the same university with the thesis "The Atonement and God in Modern English Theology"; in 1954, he obtained a licentiate, summa cum laude, in Sacred Scriptures from the Pontifical Biblical Institute, Rome; and in that same year, he did an archeological visit to the Holy Land; he conducted research in Semitic languages at Oxford University, 1957-1958; and at Cambridge University, 1958-1959, as research assistant to Professor A. J. Arberry, to help him in his studies on Maltese literature and on Dun Karm; continued Hebrew studies under Professor Winton-Thomas. Besides his native Maltese, he knows English, Italian, French, German, Dutch, Latin, Greek and Hebrew.


Ordained, March 25, 1950, in the patriarchal Lateran basilica, Rome. Further studies, 1950 to 1954. Returned to Malta in 1954 and taught for two years at the Augustinian Theological College and at Mater Admirabilis Training College, in Rabat. Further studies in England, 1957 to 1959. Returned to Malta in 1959 and for another two years taught at the Augustinian Theological college and at Mater Admirabilis. Invited twice to deliver lectures on apologetics by the Royal University of Malta to science students. He delivered various public lectures on cultural subject at the British Institute, Valletta. In 1961, he was sent to Rome to complete his thesis in biblical studies, but was selected as secretary of the Vatican Vicariate by Peter Canisius van Lierde, O.S.A., titular bishop of Porfireone, papal sacristan and vicar of His Holiness for Vatican City. In that position he took part in the conclave that elected Pope Paul VI on June 21, 1963. In 1965 he was named president of the Istituto Teologico Augustinianum, and lectured there as ordinary professor. He continued his studies and writings on biblical matters. In 1970, together with Father Agostino Trapé, he founded the Istituto Patristico Augustinianum in Rome; in 1971 he was elected its first president and held the post until 1979; he is still a lecturer at the institute. He was member of the commission for the preparation of the document Sapientia christiana, at the time the magna carta of all pontifical universities. Also in 1970, he was invited to lecture on hermeneutics at the Pontifical Biblical Institute, Rome, which he until 2002. From 1971 until 1989, he also lectured in biblical theology at the Pontifical Lateran University. He organized, chaired or participated in, by means of lectures and papers, numerous international and local congresses on the Bible and hermeneutics and on patristics, in Italy and abroad. Member of the Societas Novi Testamenti; and of the Association Patristique Internationale. Consultor of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith from 1984 to the present. Invited to lecture at the Accademia dei Lincei in Rome; at the Consiglio Nazioinale delle Ricerche; and to collaborate with the Enciclopedia Italiana Treccani. In 1998, he was nominated apostolic visitor to seminaries in India. From 2002 to 2003, he was member of ecumenical commissions for talks with representatives of the Orthodox Church in Sofia, Bulgaria. In 2003, he was nominated by Cardinal Angelo Sodano, secretary of State, member of the Pontifical Theological Academy. In 2004, he was nominated member of the Pontifical Biblical Commission. He received his country's highest decoration, the National Order of Merit, in the rank of Companion, from President George Abela of Malta, on December 13, 2011, in ceremonies at the presidential palace commemorating the 37th anniversary of Malta as a republic. Currently, he is a lecturer at Libera Universitā Maria Ss. Assunta (LUMSA), in Rome. Currently, he is a member of Collegio Santa Monica, Rome. He is listed in Who's Who in Biblical Studies and Archeology, 1993; and in International Who's Who.


Elected Titular Archbishop of San Leone. His episcopal motto is In te Domine speravi. He  received the episcopal consecration on February 8, 2012, at 6 p.m., in St. John's Co-Cathedral in Valletta, from Mgr Paul Cremona, O.P., Archbishop of Malta, assisted by Cardinal-elect Giuseppe Versaldi, Archbishop-bishop emeritus of Alessandria, president of the prefecture for the Economic Affairs of the Holy See , and by Mgr Mario Grech, Bishop of Gozo.


Created cardinal in the consistory of February 18, 2012.  H.E. Prospero Grech is Cardinal Deacon of Santa Maria Goretti.  Since he is over 80 years old he is not a Cardinal elector.

Works by Prosper Grech

 (2008). L'interpretazione Patristica Dei Salmi. Augustinianum 48 (1):221-235.

 (2007). Origene. Augustinianum 47 (2):402-403.

 (1996). Justification by Faith in Origen's Commentary on Romans. Augustinianum 36 (2):337-359.

 (1995). Lo Gnosticismo. Augustinianum 35 (2):587-596.

 (1991). Studies on the Testament of Job. Augustinianum 31 (2):484-485.

 (1990). Apocalypticism in the Mediterranean World and the Near East. Augustinianum 30 (1):219-219.

 (1990). Die Stadtrömischen Christen in den Ersten Beiden Jahrhunderten. Augustinianum 30 (1):641-643.

 (1990). Figlia di Sion E Serva Del Signore. Augustinianum 30 (1):218-218.

 (1990). L'Apocalisse. Augustinianum 30 (1):217-218.

 (1988). Christologie Und Wunder. Augustinianum 28 (3):704-704.

 (1988). Neutestamentliche Apokryphen. Augustinianum 28 (3):703-703.

 (1987). Die Stadtrömischen Christen in den Ersten Beiden Jahrhunderten. Augustinianum 27 (3):641-643.

 (1987). Law in Paul's Thought. Augustinianum 27 (1/2):331-332.

 (1987). Naissance d'Une Exégčse. Augustinianum 27 (1/2):333-333.

 (1986). Abba'. Augustinianum 26 (3):582-584.

 (1986). Die Briefe des Ignatius von Antiochia Und der Polykarpbrief. Augustinianum 26 (1-2):307-307.

 (1986). Die Johannesoffenbarung Und Die Kirche. Augustinianum 26 (1-2):306-307.

 (1986). El Método Midrásico y la Exégesis Del Neuvo Testamento. Augustinianum 26 (3):581-582.

 (1985). Criteri di Ortodossia Ad Eresia Nel N.T. Augustinianum 25 (3):583-596.

 (1982). Bibbia Come Parola di Dio. Augustinianum 22 (3):595-595.

 (1982). Jesus Als Lehrer. Augustinianum 22 (3):596-597.

 (1981). Le Mirage de L'Eschatologie. Augustinianum 21 (2):415-416.

 (1978). Compendia Rerum Iudaicarum Ad Novum Testamentum. Augustinianum 18 (2):397-398.

 (1977). Der Römerbrief. Augustinianum 17 (3):567-567.

 (1977). Geschichte der Urchristlichen Literatur. Augustinianum 17 (2):429-430.

 (1976). A History of the Criticism of the Acts of the Apostles. Augustinianum 16 (2):411-411.

 (1976). Das Heilsgeschichtliche Credo in den Reden der Apostelgeschichte. Augustinianum 16 (2):412-412.

 (1972). La Nuova Ermeneutica. Augustinianum 12 (2):277-296.



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