We use our own and third party cookies to improve your user experience; by continuing to browse, we understand that you accept their use. You can get more information on our cookies policy.

Rome Reports

You are using an outdated browser

In order to deliver the greatest experience to our visitors we use cutting edge web development techniques that require a modern browser. To view this page please use Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox or Internet Explorer 11 or greater

Card. López Romero: I doubted if I should become a priest, but one question changed me


Card. Cristóbal López Romero, 67, is a Salesian. He has been the archbishop of Rabat, Morocco, for a year and a half, after serving as a missionary in Bolivia and Paraguay.

CARD. CRISTÓBAL LÓPEZ ROMERO
Archbishop of Rabat (Morocco)
“I was fine. I was happy finishing theology, I was doubtful and asked, ‘Why should I become a priest if I already feel complete, fulfilled, and if I lack nothing?’ Someone had to come and gave me a push, telling me, ‘Do you think the priesthood is for oneself?’ The question isn’t if you need to be a priest for yourself. The question is if young people need priests to care for them. Sure, as a Salesian, I always had to answer that question with: I am here to do Your will.”

He feels deeply attached to three continents. He was born in Spain, lived most of his life in South America, and is now in Morocco. This is a life he could have never imagined.

CARD. CRISTÓBAL LÓPEZ ROMERO
Archbishop of Rabat (Morocco)
“On my way to Bolivia, I boarded the plane. Despite the flight being so short, they give you a juice box and some cookies. On the juice box was the airline’s slogan. It was “Let yourself be taken.” For me that has been and will continue to be a life motto. “Let yourself be taken.” It’s as if God is telling me: I am the One who directs your life. That has always helped me because whenever I’ve been in some sort of difficulty, I’ve been able to protest and say, “Lord, I did not come here. You brought me here and now, please get me out of this mess.”

He has lived in very different cultures and circumstances, but according to him, the Catholic Church’s priority is always the same.

CARD. CRISTÓBAL LÓPEZ ROMERO
Archbishop of Rabat (Morocco)
“The priority is not to expand the Church. The priority is not to be more, to have more baptisms or religious weddings. The priority is to build a world of brothers and sisters with those who share our faith or have a different faith, and with those who have no faith.”

By making him cardinal, the pope ensures that the whole Church will see the concerns and strengths in places where Christians are a minority and have to earn a place in society.