Show Menu

Cardinal Paolo Sardi, Cardinal Patronus of the Order, 2009 – 2014, dies in Rome

The Order of Malta is deeply saddened by the news

Rome, 13 July 2019

His Eminence Cardinal Sardi who has died today

The Grand Magistry of the Sovereign Order of Malta has learned with great sadness of the death today in Rome of His Eminence Cardinal Paolo Sardi, Bailiff Grand Cross of Honour and Devotion, after a short illness.

As Cardinal Patronus of the Order from June 2009 until November 2014, Cardinal Sardi leaves the Order family a profound memory. On learning of his passing, the Grand Master, Fra’ Giacomo Dalla Torre del Tempio di Sanguinetto, immediately prayed for the repose of his soul.

Paolo Sardi was born on 1st September 1934 in Ricaldone, province of Alessandria, in the diocese of Aqi. He was ordained a priest on 29 June 1958, and after studies in theology, graduated in canon law and jurisprudence at the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart in Milan. He taught moral theology in Turin until 1976, when he was called to the Vatican to work in the Secretariat of State. In 1992 he was nominated vice-councillor and on 10 December 1996, apostolic nuncio with special assignments and titular archbishop of Sutri. Pope John Paul II ordained him a bishop on 6 January 1997. On 23 October 2004 he was nominated vice-camerlengo of the Church and six years later he was created cardinal by Pope Benedict XVI, 20 November 2010.

 Pope Benedict XVI nominated him Cardinal Patronus of the Order of Malta on 6 June 2009, an assignment he carried out with devoted commitment until his retirement on 8 November 2014.

The members of the Order of Malta remember Cardinal Paolo Sardi most especially for his gentle and modest ways, for his warmth of character, for his inspiring oratory and for his devoted participation in the Order’s annual pilgrimages to Lourdes, Loreto and Assisi. He was also a concelebrant at the International Mass of the Order in Lourdes in May of this year.

The Order of Malta shares the sorrow of the family, in prayer and in mourning the passing of a distinguished servant of the Church. 
His Eminence Cardinal Paolo Sardi, Bailiff Grand Cross of Honour and Devotion, 1934-2019. R.I.P.

News Archive

2020 - 2019 - 2018 - 2017 - 2016 - 2015 - 2014 - 2013 - 2012



The mission of the Order of Malta is inspired by its tradition of ‘Tuitio Fidei et Obsequium Pauperum', to assist the poor and the sick, and bear witness to the Christian faith.


The Sovereign Order of Malta is a sovereign subject of international law. The Order - which is based in Rome, in via Condotti - has its own Government, an independent magistracy, and bilateral diplomatic relations with 110 countries.


The Order of St John of Jerusalem is one of the oldest institutions of Western and Christian civilisation. Present in Palestine in around 1048, it is a lay religious Order, traditionally of military, chivalrous, noble nature.