CARDINAL MASSIMO MASv•-•SIMI, the Holy Sec's "Lord Chief Justice," died from a heart attack In Rome on Saturday. He was 76.
His Eminence was Prefect of the Apostolic Segnatura, the Holy See's Supreme Court, and President of the highest court of Vatican City. Previously he had been Dean of the Sacred Roman Rota—the senior judge of the court largely concerned with nullity decrees.
He was also at the time of his death President of the Pontifical Commission for the Authentic Interpretation of the Code of Canon Law and President of the commission which is editing a similar code for the Eastern Rites.
Throughout his career he remained the simple priest Don Massimo, spending the hours he was free from the courts and their work in caring for the spiritual and moral formation of young people, following each member in his or her studies, always keeping in touch with them and their families.
He wrote immensely learned books of law but also catechetical books and smaller works for youth.
Cardinal Massimi never stayed in a seminary: like the present Holy Father he attended the Pontifical Roman Seminary as a day pupil. He was ordained a few days before his 23rd birthday.
His Eminence is the first Cardinal to die since the death in 1952 of Cardinal Faulhaber of Munich.