Cardenal Infante

The Cardenal Infante (Ferdinand de Austria) was Apostolic Administrator of Spain’s primal see Toledo for over 20 years…yet as far as I can tell he was never consecrated a bishop nor even ordained a priest. Obviously this would have been a case of being granted power of jurisdiction without power of orders. Anyone know how that would have been justified at the time? During liturgical functions at Toledo’s cathedral would he simply have sat off to the side while actual ordained priests presided over the ceremonies?

According to Wikipedia:

As his father wished that he make an ecclesiastical career, Ferdinand was elevated to the Primacy of Spain in 1619, becoming Archbishop of Toledo. Shortly afterwards he was created Cardinal. The style Cardinal-Infante was a combination of his dignity as Cardinal and his station as a royal Prince (Infante in Spanish) of Spain. Ferdinand was never actually ordained a priest (however he received the minor orders),

Although we would certainly see this as irregular, the Spanish monarchy had great power in the their Church hierarchy for centuries.

I’m not sure, but it likely was probably a kind of delegation from either the supreme authority in the Church, as most kinds of extra jurisdiction are. For example, except for the Pope, no bishop has innate authority over any other. Primates, metropolitans, etc. that have such authority receive the pallium from the Pope, which symbolizes his delegation of his super-jurisdictional authority.

Therefore, for a cleric with minor orders to exercise primatial authority, there would need to be some delegation of authority to that cleric.

Just to add to my post above, that is why he was called an administrator and not an ordinary. In the context of jurisdiction “ordinary” means jurisdiction is not delegated.

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