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Juan Chapa, Dean of the School of Theology of the University of Navarre.

A life in the service of the Church

Juan Antonio Gil Tamayo (1966-2019)

Tue, 12 Mar 2019 12:32:00 +0000 Published in ABC

"Let us show that we are what we believe". These words written by St. Cyprian in the third century in a treatise on death can well be applied to Prof. Gil Tamayo, who had a special affection for the Carthaginian saint because of the many hours he devoted to studying him. Juan Antonio has just left us and if at this time we must say something about his person, about who he was and what he did, we can say with justice that throughout his life he wanted nothing more than to show with his conduct what he believed in. For he was a man of faith and he manifested it in deeds.

Juan Antonio was born in Zalamea de la Serena, Badajoz, 52 years ago and left his homeland at a very young age to first go to live in Madrid and then to study in Pamplona. Philosophy After graduating from the University of Navarra, Spain, in 2002 he was ordained a priest of the Prelature of Opus Dei, an institution to which he had belonged since his youth and to which he faithfully dedicated his life. That same year he received his doctorate in Theology with a work directed by Prof. Marcelo Merino graduate "The Church as mystery of communion in Cyprian of Carthage". He joined the School of Theology of the University of Navarra to be in charge of the teaching of Patrology and History of the Church in the ancient age, in 2005 he specialized in theology and patristic sciences at the high school Patristic "Augustinianum" in Rome, focusing his research on the Latin patristic programs of study , especially in the African tradition (Tertullian, Cyprian, Optatus and Augustine). In addition to numerous articles in specialized journals, in 2016 he completed the two-volume edition of the complete works of St. Cyprian and continued to work on patristic topics until a few months ago.

But, in addition to his scientific work, Juan Antonio will be remembered for the intense activity he developed as director of programs of study of the School of Theology and his dedication to the students, especially to the future priests. In this task he put exemplary commitment and sacrifice. issue A reflection of this dedication and affection is the considerable number of times that the students who finished programs of study elected him godfather of their graduating class. Because Juan Antonio was a man who knew how to love and, because of his goodness -because he was truly a good man-, because of his joy and his capacity to care for others, he also knew how to make himself loved.

At the beginning, I was saying, in a gloss on St. Cyprian, that John Anthony wanted nothing more than to be what he believed in. Certainly, if he was so loved, it was because of his great humanity and his great faith. He was a priest who wanted to serve the Church generously by doing the will of God. Thank you very much, Juan Antonio, for all that you have given us. May you rest in the peace of the Lord.


*Juan Antonio Gil Tamayo was born in Zalamea de la Serena (Badajoz) on December 24, 1966 and died in Pamplona on March 9, 2019.