Archbishop Charles J. Scicluna

Archbishop of Malta

fidelis et verax


Date Age Event Title
15 May 1959   Born Toronto Canada
11July 1986 27.2 Ordained Priest Priest of Malta
1995 36.6 Appointed

Substitute Promoter of Justice of the Apostolic Signatura

21 October 2002 43.5 Appointed

Promoter of Justice of the Congragation for the Doctrine of Faith

6 October 2012 53.4 Appointed Auxiliary Bishop of Malta
6 October 2012 53.4 Appointed Titular Bishop of San Leone
24 November 2012 53.5 Ordained Bishop Titular Bishop of San Leone
28 February 2015 55.9 Appointed Archbishop of Malta




Episcopal Lineage / Apostolic Succession:

  • Arcbishop Charles J Scicluna (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 +



Mgr Charles J. Scicluna was born of Emanuel and Maria Carmela nee Falzon in Toronto, Canada, on 15 May 1959.

The Scicluna family moved to Qormi, Malta, in 1960 and to Lija, Malta, in 1976. Mgr Scicluna was educated at Saint Sebastian Primary School, Qormi, at the Saint Joseph Secondary Technical School, Paola, and at Saint Edward's College, Cottonera. He entered the Law Course at the University of Malta in 1976 and he graduated Doctor of Laws in 1984.

After completing his Seminary studies and a Licentiate in Pastoral Theology at the Faculty of Theology, Tal-Virtù, he was ordained to the Roman Catholic priesthood by the Archbishop of Malta, Monsignor Joseph Mercieca, on 11 July 1986. Monsignor Scicluna was sent to read Canon Law at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome and obtained the doctorate in Canon Law with specialization in Jurisprudence in 1991.

After his Rome studies Mgr Scicluna worked on the Malta Metropolitan Tribunal as Defender of the Bond and was lecturer in Pastoral Theology and Canon Law at the University of Malta. He served in the parishes of Attard, Saint Gregory’s Sliema and Iklin, Lija. He also served as Vice Rector at the Major Seminary between 1994 and 1995 when he was called to the Vatican to work on the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura as Substitute Promoter of Justice.

In 1996 he was appointed Postulator for the cause of beatification and canonization of Dun Ġorġ Preca. In October 2002, Monsignor Scicluna was nominated Promoter of Justice at the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith detailed to investigate and prosecute the more grave crimes reserved to the exclusive competence of the Congregation. He has also lectured widely on issues concerning child protection in the Church, visiting a number of local churches in Europe, Asia, Africa, the Americas, and Australia. In Rome Mgr Scicluna was also a Visiting Lecturer in Penal Processes at the Pontifical Gregorian University (Rome) and helped with chaplaincy work at the Convent of the Nuns of Saint Bridget, Piazza Farnese, and at the Venerable English College in Rome.

Benedict XVI’s decision to send Scicluna from Rome to Malta in October 2012 surprised many given his high-profile role in combatting the sexual abuse of minors. Some queried then whether his re-assignment was part of a backlash by a number of ranking Vatican officials who did not agree with the ‘zero-tolerance’ policy being pursued by the German pope and his Maltese prosecutor.   The pontiff, however, quickly squashed that interpretation of the move when less than three months later. On 1 Dec 2012, he appointed the new bishop to the board of the CDF that deals with abuse cases. The message was clear: the zero-tolerance policy remained in place and, in this new role, Scicluna could oversee what is happening in this and other fields at the CDF. Moreover, because of his new position he automatically joined the CDF’s board of two dozen cardinals and bishops who sit in judgment on abuse cases. Scicluna thus remained an active player in the papal effort to the deal effectively with clerical predators and sexual abusers of minors in the Church, and to prevent such abuse in the future.

Mgr Scicluna was nominared Titular Bishop of San Leone on 6 October 2012.  He was ordained Bishop on 24 November 2012.

Soon after his election, Pope Francis not only confirmed the Maltese bishop in that role in the CDF, but also used him in other ways in pursuit of his zero tolerance policy. In Jan 2014, for example, he sent Scicluna to Geneva as a member of the Holy See’s delegation to respond to the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child. Three months later, in April, he sent him to Scotland to investigate the charges against Scotland’s Cardinal Keith O’Brien who resigned as archbishop of St Andrew’s and Edinburgh in early 2013 and did not participate in the conclave, after admitting to sexual misconduct (with adults).

After the resignation of Archbishop Paul Cremona on 18 October 2014, 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 about them.

On January 15, Pope Francis again signaled his trust in Bishop Scicluna by appointing him as President of the newly established CDF review board (“College for the examination of appeals”) to speed up the appeals process at the congregation. The review board, composed of seven cardinals and bishops, is charged with hearing and ruling on appeals cases from clerics of various ranks (including cardinals and bishops) that involve the sexual abuse of minors or abuse of the Sacrament of Reconciliation (Confession).

Mgr Scicluna was announced as the new Archbishop-elect on February 27, 2015. On March 21, 2015, Mgr Scicluna was installed as Archbishop of Malta