Gerada, Emmanuel (18.5.1920-)

Archbishop and Vatican diplomat

Gerada was born in Zejtun and educated at the Lyceum, the Archbishop's Seminary, and the RUM from where he graduated BA in 1939 and B.S.Th. in 1941. He was awarded a licentiate in theology in 1946.

Gerada was ordained priest by Bishop Emmanuel Galea on 1 August 1943, afer obtaining the required dispensation as he was not yet 24 years old. He was awarded a travelling scholarship by the British Council in English classics and pursued further studies at Nottingham University College in 1944.

Gerada obtained his doctorate in canon law from the Gregorian University in 1952 and pursued a course leading to diplomatic service with the Holy See at the Pontificia Accademia Ecclesiastica in Rome. After a year's training as papal secretariat of state he was appointed attachee to the apostolic internunciature in Egypt in 1952 and private chamberlain to the Pope in 1953. He was transferred as secretary to the apostolic intemunciature in India, and appointed secretary to the nunciature in Dublin in 1956 - on the death of the nuncio, he also performed the duties of charee d'affaires. His next appointment was that of auditor of the nunciature and charge d'affaires in Tokyo (1960-64), when he was posted to the apostolic delegation in Mexico.

In 1965 Gerada was appointed counsellor of the nunciature and domestic prelate by Pope Paul VI; his next diplomatic assignment was that of chargee d'affaires at Kigali, Rwanda, in 1966.

On 18 June 1967, Gerada was consecrated titular bishop of Nomentum and auxiliary to Archbishop Mgr. Michael Gonzi by Gonzi himself assisted by Vicar General Mgr. Emmanuel Galea, and by the auxiliary Bishop, Patrick Dunne, of Dublin. 'Me ceremony was presided over by the apostolic nuncio to Malta, Mgr. Martin John O'Connor.

In 1973 Gerada resumed his career in the Holy See's diplomatic service, and on his appointment as apostolic nuncio to El Salvador and Guatemala he became an archbishop. He was a close friend of Archbishop Oscar Romero Y Galdainuz of San Salvador, who was assassinated on 25 March 1980 as he was saying Mass.

Gerada's next postings were those of apostolic nuncio to Pakistan (1980) and to Ireland (1989).

Source: Maltese Biographies of the Twentieth Century (1997), editors Michael J. Schiavone and Louis J. Scerri

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