• Cardinal Rigali was born in Los Angeles, California, April 19, 1935, the son of Henry A. Rigali and Frances Irene White, the last of seven children.
• Family members: Sister Charlotte Rigali, C.S.J.(St.Louis, MO); Henry A. Rigali (Seaford, NY); Philip Rigali (Newport Beach, CA); Paul J. Rigali (deceased); Clare Rigali (deceased); Rev. Norbert J. Rigali, S.J. (San Diego, CA).
• He was baptized in Holy Cross Parish and attended Holy Cross and Transfiguration Grammar Schools (Los Angeles).
• He studied in the archdiocesan seminaries: Los Angeles College (Los Angeles, CA), Our Lady Queen of Angels Seminary (San Fernando, CA), St. John s College and St. John's Seminary (Camarillo, CA).
• He was ordained a priest by Cardinal James Francis McIntyre in the Cathedral of Saint Vibiana in Los Angeles on April 25, 1961.
• Immediately after ordination to the priesthood, he was temporarily assigned as associate pastor at Ascension Parish (Los Angeles) and then at St. Raymond s Parish (Downey).
• In October 1961 he began graduate studies in Canon Law in Rome at the Pontifical Gregorian University.
• During the first two sessions of the Second Vatican Council, he was one of the priest assistants in St. Peter s Basilica.
• In June 1964 he attained the Doctorate in Canon Law from the Pontifical Gregorian University.
• During the summer of 1964 he served as associate at St. Madeleine s Parish in Pomona (Archdiocese of Los Angeles).
• From 1964 to 1966 he followed the course of studies at the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy in preparation for service to the Holy See. On November 25, 1964, he entered the English language department of the Secretariat of State.
• From September 1966 to February 1970 he served at the Apostolic Nunciature in Madagascar, which was also the Apostolic Delegation for the Islands of the Indian Ocean, La Reunion and Mauritius.
• He was named a Papal Chamberlain on July 11, 1967.
• He returned to Rome on February 11, 1970, and was appointed Director of the English-language Section of the Secretariat of State. At the same time he became the English-language translator for Pope Paul VI, whom he accompanied on his international journey to Iran, Dhaka (then East Pakistan), the Philippines, Australia, Samoa, American Samoa, Indonesia, Hong Kong, and Sri Lanka (then Ceylon).
• During the years 1970-1985 he lived at the Villa Stritch (the residence set up by the American Bishops for United States diocesan priests working in the Roman Curia), and for a number of those years he was Chaplain to the Cloistered Carmelite Nuns at the Monastery of Saint Joseph in Rome.
• During the years 1972-1973 he was a Professor at the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy.
• Between the years 1979-1987 he accompanied Pope John Paul II on a number of his international journeys, including his two major journeys to the United States (1979, 1987).
• He was made a Prelate of Honor of His Holiness on April 19, 1980.
• He became a magistral chaplain in the Order of the Knights of Malta on October 25, 1984.
• On June 8, 1985, he was appointed Titular Archbishop of Bolsena and President of the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy.
• On September 14, 1985, he was ordained a bishop by Pope John Paul II in the Cathedral of Albano.
• On October 13, 1986, he became a member of the Order of the Knights of the Holy Sepulchre.
• From 1985 to 1990, in addition to being President of the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy, he held a number of positions at the Vatican, serving the Secretariat of State, the Council for Public Affairs of the Church, the Congregation for Bishops and the Pontifical Council for the Laity. On December 21, 1989, he was named Secretary of the Congregation for Bishops, and on January 2, 1990 he became the Secretary of the College of Cardinals. He was likewise a member of the Permanent Interdicasterial Commission of the Holy See and served as a consultant to the Pontifical Commission for Latin America and the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
• In addition to his work in the offices of the Roman Curia, Archbishop Rigali was engaged in other pastoral activities serving a number of parishes and seminaries of Rome.
• On January 25, 1994, Archbishop Rigali was appointed eighth Bishop/seventh Archbishop of St. Louis by Pope John Paul II.
• Archbishop Rigali was installed as Archbishop of St. Louis on March 15, 1994, by His Eminence, Cardinal Bernardin Gantin, Prefect of the Congregation for Bishops, in the presence of Archbishop Agostino Cacciavillan, Apostolic Pro-Nuncio to the United States.
• On November 7, 1994, he became a member of the Knights of Columbus.
• He is the Chairman of the Iconography Committee of the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception and a member of the Board of Trustees of the Shrine.
• He serves on the Board of Trustees of the Catholic University of America and is Chair of the University Seminary Committee and a member of the Administrative Committee.
. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the National Catholic Bioethics Center.
• He is Episcopal Liaison for the Council of Major Superiors of Women Religious.
• On June 12, 1995, Archbishop Rigali was appointed by Pope John Paul II to the Preparatory Council of the Special Assembly of the Synod of Bishops for America.
• Assembly for America of the Synod of Bishops (November-December 1997).
• On January 26-27, 1999, he hosted the Pastoral Visit of Pope John Paul II to St. Louis.
• He was appointed by Pope John Paul II as a member of the 2001 Synod of Bishops.
• His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI appointed Cardinal Rigali a member of the Vatican Congregation for Bishops on September 26, 2007. He is also a member of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments and a member of the Congregation’s Vox Clara Committee. In addition, he is a member of the Administration of the Patrimony of the Holy See.
• Cardinal Rigali serves as a member of the following Committees of the USCCB:
Bishops Committee on Divine Worship
Ad Hoc Committee on the Review of Scripture Translations
. He is a Consultant to the USCCB International and Public Policy Committee and is President of the Board of Directors of the Black and Indian Mission Office.
• He is a member of the Papal Foundation.
• He was appointed the twelfth bishop/eighth Archbishop of Philadelphia, July 15, 2003; his Installation took place on October 7, 2003.
• Archbishop Rigali was appointed to the College of Cardinals by His Holiness Pope John Paul II on September 28, 2003.
• He was formally created Cardinal in the Public Consistory in Saint Peter's Square on October 21, 2003.
• On June 5, 2004 he became a member of the Knights of Peter Claver.
• As Metropolitan Archbishop of Philadelphia, Cardinal Rigali received the pallium from the Holy Father on June 29, 2004.
• In October 2005 he served as a member of the XI Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops in the Vatican.