Posted by Mary Wimberley on 2012-02-10


Samford University’s Beeson Divinity School will host Catholic priest Raniero Cantalamessa, preacher to the papal household at the Vatican, in a chapel service Tuesday, Feb. 21. Father Cantalamessa will speak at 11 a.m. in Hodges Chapel as part of Beeson’s weekly worship series. The public is invited.

An ordained Franciscan Capuchin priest, Cantalamessa was appointed to his post in 1980 by Pope John Paul II and has remained in the position under the pontificate of Pope Benedict XVI. As papal priest, he preaches weekly sermons to the Pope and other officials during Advent and Lent. He is considered to be the only person allowed to preach to the Pope.

Cantalamessa has been active in the Catholic Charismatic Renewal movement and is a member of the Catholic delegation for the Dialogue with Pentecostal Churches. A former professor of Christian history and religious sciences department head at Catholic University of Milan, he holds doctoral degrees in theology and classical literature.

Beeson divinity school dean Dr. Timothy George is a leader in the Evangelicals and Catholics Together movement and is a co-author of The Manhattan Declaration, a call of Christian conscience issued by Orthodox, Catholic and Evangelical Christian leaders.


Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.