Valerio Valeri
Prefect of the Congregation for Religious
1927 Autochrome by Georges Chevalier
ChurchRoman Catholic Church
Appointed17 January 1953
Term ended22 July 1963
PredecessorClemente Micara
SuccessorIldebrando Antoniutti
Other post(s)Cardinal-Priest of San Silvestro in Capite (1953–63)
Ordination21 December 1907
Consecration28 October 1927
by Donato Raffaele Sbarretti Tazza
Created cardinal12 January 1953
by Pope Pius XII
Personal details
Valerio Valeri

7 November 1883
Died22 July 1963(1963-07-22) (aged 79)
Rome, Italy
Previous post(s)
Alma materPontifical Roman Athenaeum S. Apollinare
MottoPax in virtute
Coat of armsValerio Valeri's coat of arms
Styles of
Valerio Valeri
Reference styleHis Eminence
Spoken styleYour Eminence
Informal styleCardinal

Valerio Valeri (7 November 1883 – 22 July 1963) was an Italian Cardinal of the Catholic Church. He served as Prefect of the Sacred Congregation for Religious in the Roman Curia from 1953 until his death, and was elevated to the cardinalate in 1953 by Pope Pius XII.

President Charles de Gaulle insisted that Valeri be removed as Apostolic Nuncio to France (1936-1944) for collaborating with the Vichy regime.[1][2]


Valerio Valeri was born in Santa Fiora, and studied at the Roman-Pio Seminary and the Pontifical Roman Athenaeum S. Apollinare, where he was made a professor in 1904. Ordained to the priesthood on 21 December 1907, he then taught at the Pontifical Regional Seminary in Fano until 1909. After serving as a military chaplain during World War I, Valeri entered the Roman Curia, as a staff member of the Secretariat of State, in 1920. From 1921 to 1927, he was auditor of the French nunciature. He was raised to the rank of Privy Chamberlain of His Holiness on 6 July 1921, and later Domestic Prelate of His Holiness on 22 July 1923.

On 18 October 1927, Valeri was appointed Titular Archbishop of Ephesus and Apostolic Delegate to Egypt and Arabia.[3] He received his episcopal consecration on the following 28 October from Cardinal Donato Sbarretti, with Archbishop Pietro Benedetti, MSC, and Bishop Giuseppe Angelucci serving as co-consecrators. Valeri was later named Nuncio to Romania on 1 July 1933, and finally Apostolic Nuncio to France on 11 July 1936. In August 1942, the nuncio disputed Marshal Pétain's claim that Pope Pius XII understood and approved of France's increased hostility towards the Jews.[4][5] He was awarded the Grand Cross of the Légion d'honneur upon leaving France in 1944 to again work in the Secretariat of State, specifically the Congregation for Extraordinary Ecclesiastical Affairs. After becoming President of the Central Committee for the Holy Year on 28 June 1948, Archbishop Valeri was made assessor of the Sacred Congregation for the Oriental Churches on 1 September of that same year.

He was created Cardinal-Priest of S. Silvestro in Capite by Pius XII in the consistory of 12 January 1953. Pope Pius advanced him to Prefect of the Sacred Congregation for Religious five days later, on 17 January. Cardinal Valeri was one of the cardinal electors who participated in the 1958 papal conclave that selected Pope John XXIII, who had earlier succeeded him as the French nuncio. Cardinal Valeri lived long enough to only attend the first session of the Second Vatican Council in 1962, and to participate in the conclave of 1963, which resulted in the election of Pope Paul VI.

Valeri died in Rome, at age 79. He is buried in his family's tomb in Santa Fiora.


  1. ^ International Herald Tribune. Church to Voice Sorrow for "Silence" During War Deportations: Catholic Apology to Jews of France September 22, 1997
  2. ^ The Unlikely Election of John XXIII Archived 2007-02-03 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ Acta Apostolicae Sedis (PDF). Vol. XIX. 1927. pp. 381, 441. Retrieved 18 May 2020. Delegatum Apostolicum in Aegypto et in Arabia
  4. ^ TIME Magazine. Sacrificium Abramae 17 August 1942
  5. ^ EWTN. The Good Samaritan: Jewish Praise for Pope Pius XII
Catholic Church titles Preceded byAndrea Cassulo Apostolic Delegate to Egypt and Arabia 1927–1933 Succeeded byGustavo Testa Preceded byAngelo Dolci Nuncio to Romania 1933–1936 Succeeded byAndrea Cassulo Preceded byLuigi Maglione Apostolic Nuncio to France 1936–1944 Succeeded byAngelo Roncalli Preceded byClemente Micara Prefect of the Sacred Congregation for Religious 1953–1963 Succeeded byIldebrando Antoniutti Preceded byLuigi Lavitrano Cardinal-Priest of S. Silvestro in Capite 1953–1963 Succeeded byJohn Carmel Heenan