(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis has sent a telegram expressing his condolences for the death of Cardinal Giovanni Coppa, a long-serving diplomat and official of the Roman Curia, who died Monday at the age of 90. Cardinal Coppa was one of the chief Latinists of the II Vatican Council. He wrote several volumes on St. Ambrose of Milan, the Gospels, and the Fathers of the Church.
As Nuncio, he served in Czechloslovakia (later the Czech Republic).
In his telegram, addressed to the Dean of the College of Cardinals, Cardinal Angelo Sodano, Pope Francis remembers Cardinal Coppa as a dedicated and pastorally sensitive servant of the Church and the Papacy. “As Assessor of the Secretariat of State and as Delegate for the Pontifical Diplomatic Representations,” writes Pope Francis, “he showed pastoral wisdom and careful attention to the needs of others.” The Holy Father goes on to say, “When he was sent as Pontifical Representative to the Nunciature in Prague, he gave witness to a particularly intense and fruitful commitment to the spiritual good of that nation.”
The Holy Father concludes with promises of “fervent prayers of suffrage, so that, by the intercession of the Virgin Mary and of St. Ambrose, of whose works he was among the foremost students, the Lord might welcome the Cardinal – sorely missed – in joy and peace eternal,” and imparts his Apostolic Blessing on all those who share in suffering at the loss of so zealous a Pastor.