Iraq: Chaldean Patriarch emeritus Emmanuel III Delly has died | Cardinal Emmanuel III Delly, Patriarch emeritus of Babylon of the Chaldeans, Chaldean Church. Cardinal Delly, Patriarch, Raphael Louis Sako I,
Cardinal Emmanuel Delly
Cardinal Emmanuel III Delly, Patriarch emeritus of Babylon of the Chaldeans died in hospital in San Diego, California on 8 April. He was 87 years old. The news was announced by Chaldean Church sources. The current Chaldean Patriarch, Raphael Louis Sako I, said Cardinal Delly “served the Chaldean Church for more than 60 years with dedication, first as a priest and then as Bishop and as Patriarch. He lived through the crises of his country: the revolution in 1958; the wars in the last decades; the persecution of Christians followed by the invasion of the USA. In all this time he remained loyal to his country and to his people, he did not abandon his flock, he remained with his faithful, praying, helping, encouraging them”.
A solemn Requiem Mass for Cardinal Delly will be celebrated in St Joseph’s Chaldean Cathedral in Baghdad. The funeral will most likely take place in the United States. The majority of the Patriarch emerituss relatives moved to the USA, and many of them live in Detroit.
Patriarch emeritus Delly was born in Telkaif, Archeparchy of Mosul of the Chaldeans on September 27, 1927. He graduated in theology at the Pontifical Urbaniana University and canon law at the Pontifical Lateran University. He was ordained a priest on December 21, 1952 by Cardinal Pietro Fumasoni Biondi in Rome, at the Pontifical Urban College of Propaganda Fide, he returned to Baghdad as secretary of the Patriarch on December 30, 1960. He was elected to the titular Church of Paleopoli of Asia on December 7, 1962 and appointed Auxiliary of Patriarch Paul II
Cheikho, receiving episcopal ordination on April 19, 1963. Since that year, as Bishop, he became a member of the Second Vatican Council. In October 2002 he resigned as Auxiliary Bishop for age limit, but a year later, on December 3, 2003, he was elected by the Chaldean Bishops as the Patriarch of Babylon, while Iraq was going through a terrible time, after the US-led military intervention led to the fall of Saddam Hussein’s regime.
During his patriarchal ministry, in August 2004, there were bloody attacks against churches in Baghdad and Mosul.