A retired Filipino cardinal who served in a key post of the Holy See died in Manila before dawn Friday, one week before he was to turn 92.
Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines spokesman Msgr. Pedro Quitorio III said Jose Cardinal Sanchez died at 5 a.m. in Metro Manila.
"Pumanaw ang butihing cardinal mga 5 a.m., ngayong umaga siya pumanaw," Quitorio said in an interview on dzBB radio.
Quitorio said Sanchez retired as bishop 10 years ago at the age of 80 but spent time in Rome before returning to the Philippines.
He said Sanchez had been appointed to head a department of the Vatican but had since retired.
"Siya ay nakadestino bilang head ng department sa Vatican. Nang nag-retire siya, nag-stay siya sa Roma at bumalik sa Pilipinas," Quitorio said.
For now, Quitorio said plans are still being finalized for Sanchez's burial.
He was appointed auxiliary bishop of Caceres (Nueva Caceres), and appointed bishop of Lesvi. He was ordainted titular bishop of Lesvi on May 12, 1968, the same website said.
Sanchez became co-adjutory bishop of Lucena on Dec. 13, 1971 and became Lucena bishop Sept. 25, 1976. He became archbishop of Nueva Segovia on Jan. 12, 1982.
On Oct. 30, 1985, he was appointed Secretary of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples in the Vatican, resigning as Nueva Segovia Archbishop on March 22, 1986.
He was elevated to cardinal on June 28, 1991 and was appointed Cardinal-Deacon on S. Pio V a Villa Carpegna on the same day.
He was appointed prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy, and appointed president of the Administration of the Patrimony of the Apostolic See on July 1, 1991.
Sanchez retired as prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy on June 15, 1996. He was appointed Cardinal-Priest of S. Pio V a Villa Carpegna on Feb. 26, 2002. — RSJ, GMA News