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Styles of
Manuel Gonçalves Cerejeira
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Reference style His Eminence
Spoken style Your Eminence
Informal style Cardinal
See Lisbon

Dom Manuel Gonçalves Cerejeira, GCC (November 29, 1888, Lousado, Vila Nova de Famalicão, Portugal[1] – August 2, 1977, Buraca, Amadora, Portugal[2]) was a Portuguese cardinal, who served as cardinal-patriarch of Lisbon, from 1929 to 1971. He was the last surviving cardinal elevated by Pope Pius XI, and his cardinalate of almost forty-eight years is the longest since the fifty-eight year cardinalate of Henry Benedict Mary Clement Stuart of York from 1747 to 1805. He took part in three conclaves, in 1939, 1958 and 1963. Although there were seven other cardinals elevated by Pius XI who participated in the 1963 conclave, Cerejeira was the longest-serving living cardinal from the death of Jozef-Ernest van Roey on August 6, 1961 until his own death almost exactly sixteen years later.

The eldest of three sons and four daughters of Avelino Gonçalves Cerejeira (Vila Nova de Famalicão, Lousado, April 14, 1857[3]Vila Nova de Famalicão, Lousado, June 13, 1927), a merchant who lived at the Lugar da Serra, in Lousado, Vila Nova de Famalicão, and wife (m. Vila Nova de Famalicão, Lousado, January 25, 1888) Joaquina Gonçalves Rebelo (Fafe, (São Bartolomeu de) Vila Cova, May 30, 1864[4]Vila Nova de Famalicão, September 30, 1918), who resided since childhood at the Parish of Lousado and when she married was a country woman, that is, a peasant woman. His younger brothers were Júlio (b. Vila Nova de Famalicão, Lousado, September 14, 1901), a medical doctor, who married in Lisbon on July 12, 1933 Celeste Maria Barradas da Silva Fiadeiro (Évora, July 12, 1903 – Porto, October 3, 1966) and had issue, Joaquim, a lawyer, António, an university employee, married to Mina ... and had female issue, and his younger sisters included a religious woman and Carolina.

He was educated at the seminary in Braga from a young age and became a priest in 1911. Following his ordination, he became a faculty member of the University of Coimbra, during which time he became a respected and revered intellectual and religious figure.

In 1928 Cerejeria became a bishop and was elevated to the patriarchate of Lisbon the following year at the tender age of forty-one, replacing António Mendes Belo, who had seen through anti-Church hostility in Portugal over his twenty-year reign to a military coup that promised to - and eventually did - temporarily end this hostility. Cerejeira was appointed cardinal a month after his appointment as Patriarch. In being so elevated, he became the youngest cardinal since Rafael Merry del Val in 1903; and there have been no younger cardinals since. The closest approach has proven to be his successor as Patriarch of Lisbon, António Ribeiro, who was made a cardinal in 1973 three months before his forty-fifth birthday.

During his extraordinarily long career as Portugal's leading Catholic churchman, Cerejeira became often associated with the authoritarian right-wing Estado Novo. This was the result of his friendship with Prime Minister António de Oliveira Salazar (a former university colleague of his at Coimbra) and his endorsement of many of the Estado Novo's policies. He signed the Concordat of 1940, between Portugal and the Catholic Church. However, even though a conservative, he accepted the Vatican Council II reforms rather more readily than did Salazar, who retained doubts as to the wisdom of John XXIII's actions.


  1. ^ Baptised in Vila Nova de Famalicão at the Parochial Church of Santa Marinha de Lousado, December 3, 1888, being his Godfather his maternal grandfather, of whom he inherited the name.
  2. ^ Other sources say he died in Lisbon, Benfica, on August 11, 1977.
  3. ^ Baptised in Vila Nova de Famalicão, Lousado, on April 16, 1857.
  4. ^ Baptised in Fafe, (São Bartolomeu de) Vila Cova, on June 1, 1864
  • Fotobiografias do Século XX, Photobiography of Cardinal Cerejeira, Círculo de Leitores.


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