Joaquin Larrain Gandarillas
Chilean Roman Catholic bishops
Chileans of Basque descent
Chilean Roman Catholic bishops Forum
Monsignor Joaquin Larrain Gandarillas was a Chilean priest, Roman Catholic bishop of Santiago, professor, writer and first president of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile.
He was born in Santiago, Chile, the sixth of 15 children of Juan Francisco Larrain Rojas and of Mercedes Gandarillas Aranguiz. He studied at the prestigious Instituto Nacional, in Santiago and from there he went to the Santiago Seminary. In 1844 he graduated in Theology and Law. After a long discernment, he decided to embrace the ecclesiastical career. Before entering the priesthood, the young Joaquin had written several impassioned articles dealing with apologetics and other religious subjects, in catholic magazines. Larrain Gandarillas was of Basque descent.
He lived in the U.S. for some time, where he took part in the Plenary Council of North America as a delegate of the bishop of Richmond. In 1853 he was appointed Rector of the Santiago Seminary. One year earlier, Larrain Gandarillas had become a member of the Faculty of Theology of the University of Chile. In 1877 he was appointed auxiliary bishop of the Santiago archdiocese. He was the first president ("rector") of the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, which was founded June 21, 1888 through a decree issued by the Santiago Archbishopric.
Bio at Catholic hierarchy
Short biographical sketch
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