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Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor dies at age of 85

This file photo shows Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor in 2012

This file photo shows Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor in 2012

01/09/2017 18:00

(Vatican Radio)  Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, former Archbishop of Westminster (Great Britain), died on Friday at the age of 85.

The Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Vincent Nichols, announced the news in a statement.

"I am writing to let you know the sad news that Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor died peacefully this afternoon, surrounded by his family and friends. Please pray for the repose of his soul," he wrote.

Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor had been seriously ill in hospital with cancer since April.

He became the 10th Archbishop of Westminster in March 2000 and retired from the role in 2009.  

Born on 24 August 1932 in Reading, Berkshire, Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor was one of six children. Two of his five brothers became priests.

He was ordained to the priesthood in Rome in October 1956, and Pope St. John Paul II made him Cardinal in 2001.

With Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor's death, the College of Cardinals is made up of 121 Cardinal-electors and 101 non-electors.

01/09/2017 18:00