Raúl Eduardo Vela Chiriboga

Raúl Eduardo Vela Chiriboga (1 January 1934 – 15 November 2020) was an Ecuadorian prelate of the Catholic Church who was the Archbishop of Quito from 2003 to 2010. He became a bishop coadjutor in 1972 and served as an auxiliary in Guayaquil, Bishop of Azogues, and Military Ordinary of Ecuador before his appointment in Quito. Pope Benedict XVI raised him to the rank of cardinal in 2010.

His Eminence

Raúl Eduardo Vela Chiriboga
Cardinal, Archbishop of Quito
Raúl Vela Chiriboga (cropped).jpg
Raúl Eduardo Vela Chiriboga in 2014
DioceseArchdiocese of Quito
SeeCathedral of Quito
Installed21 March 2003
Term ended11 September 2010
PredecessorAntonio José González Zumárraga
SuccessorFausto Trávez Trávez
Other post(s)Cardinal-Priest of Santa Maria in Via
Ordination28 July 1957
by Leonidas Eduardo Proaño Villalba
Consecration21 May 1972
by Pablo Muñoz Vega
Created cardinal20 November 2010
by Benedict XVI
Personal details
Born(1934-01-01)1 January 1934
Riobamba, Ecuador
Died15 November 2020(2020-11-15) (aged 86)
Quito, Ecuador
DenominationRoman Catholic
Previous post(s)
Coat of armsRaúl Eduardo Vela Chiriboga's coat of arms


Raúl Eduardo Vela Chiriboga was born on 1 January 1934 in Riobamba, Ecuador. He was one of nine children. He attended a Salesian high school there.[1] In 1951 he entered the major seminary in Quito and studied theology and philosophy in the local seminary.[2] On 28 July 1957, he was ordained a priest of the Diocese of Riobamba. He was the director of Caritas for that diocese. From 1968 to 1970 he served as undersecretary of the Ecuadorian Episcopal Conference and was then elected its secretary general.[1]

On 20 April 1972 Pope Paul VI appointed him titular Bishop of Ausafa and Auxiliary Bishop of Guayaquil.[3] He received his episcopal consecration on 21 May 1972. During this time he worked with the Christian Family Movement.

On 29 April 1975 Pope Paul named him Bishop of Azogues.[4] In February 1979, he participated as a delegate of Ecuador's bishops in the third General Conference of Latin American Bishops and from 1981 to 1988 he was a member of the Latin American Episcopal Council (CELAM).[2]

On 8 July 1989, Pope John Paul II transferred him to the titular see of Pauzera and appointed Military Ordinary of Ecuador.

On 21 March 2003, Pope John Paul appointed him Archbishop of Quito, where he worked above all for education and priestly formation.

Pope Benedict XVI accepted his resignation as Archbishop of Quito on 11 September 2010.[5]

Pope Benedict elevated Vela Chiriboga to the status of cardinal at a consistory on 20 November 2010, making him Cardinal-Priest of Santa Maria in Via.[6] He participated in the papal conclave of 2013 which elected Pope Francis.

He died on 15 November 2020 in Quito.[2]


  1. ^ a b "Vela Chiriboga Card. Raúl Eduardo". Holy See Press Office. Archived from the original on 4 September 2017. Retrieved 25 November 2017.
  2. ^ a b c "Ecuador, morto il cardinale Vela Chiriboga di Quito". Vatican News (in Italian). 16 November 2020. Retrieved 16 November 2020.
  3. ^ Acta Apostolicae Sedis (PDF). Vol. LXIV. 1972. p. 315. Retrieved 17 November 2020.
  4. ^ Acta Apostolicae Sedis (PDF). Vol. LXVII. 1975. p. 343. Retrieved 17 November 2020.
  5. ^ "Rinunce e Nomine, 11.10.2010" (Press release) (in Italian). Holy See Press Office. 11 September 2010. Retrieved 16 November 2020.
  6. ^ "Assegnazione dei Titoli e delle Diaconie ai nuovi Cardinali" [Assignment of Titles and Deaconries to the new Cardinals]. The Holy See (in Italian). Ufficio delle Celebrazioni Liturgiche del Sommo Pontefice. 20 November 2010. Archived from the original on 28 July 2016. Retrieved 16 February 2018.

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