With new cardinal, Pope Francis puts stamp on Church future | Inquirer News

With new cardinal, Pope Francis puts stamp on Church future

/ 12:48 PM August 28, 2022
With new cardinal, Pope Francis puts stamp on Church future

Pope Francis greets Leonardo Ulrich Steiner during a consistory ceremony to elevate Roman Catholic prelates to the rank of cardinal, at Saint Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican, August 27, 2022. REUTERS

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis on Saturday inducted 20 cardinals from around the world, choosing men who mostly agree with his vision of a more progressive and inclusive Church and influencing their choice of his eventual successor.

Francis, 85, presided at a ceremony known as a consistory, telling the new cardinals to show concern for ordinary people despite the high rank that will bring them into contact with the powerful of the earth.

ADVERTISEMENT

The ceremony marked the eight time Francis has put his stamp on the Church’s future with a new intake of cardinals who will serve as his top advisors and administrators at the Vatican and around the globe.

Those under 80 – 16 among the 20 newcomers – can enter a conclave to elect a new pope from among themselves after he dies or resigns.

FEATURED STORIES

They come from Britain, South Korea, Spain, France, Nigeria, Brazil, India, the United States, East Timor, Italy, Ghana, Singapore, Paraguay, and Colombia.

With new cardinal, Pope Francis puts stamp on Church future

Pope Francis attends a consistory ceremony to elevate Roman Catholic prelates to the rank of cardinal, at Saint Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican, August 27, 2022. REUTERS

“A Cardinal loves the Church, always with that same spiritual fire, whether dealing with great questions or handling everyday problems, with the powerful of this world or those ordinary people who are great in God’s eyes,” Francis said.

Sitting before the main altar of St. Peter’s Basilica, Francis asked them to remember “poor families, migrant and homeless persons.”

He read his homily in a strong voice, often going off script, even to joke about a Rome priest who was so close to his parishioners that he knew not only all their names, but also the names of their dogs.

Francis, elected as pope in 2013, has now chosen 83 of the 132 cardinal electors, or about 63%.

With each consistory, Francis has continued what one diplomat has called a “tilt towards Asia,” increasing the likelihood that the next pope could be from the region that is a growing economic and political powerhouse.

Resignation not around the corner

With new cardinal, Pope Francis puts stamp on Church future

Cardinal Angelo Becciu attends a consistory ceremony to elevate Roman Catholic prelates to the rank of cardinal, at Saint Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican, August 27, 2022. REUTERS

The 85-year-old pontiff told Reuters in an interview last month that if he does resign in the future for health reasons – instead of dying in office – he has no plans to do so anytime soon. This means he could name even more cardinals as soon as next year.

ADVERTISEMENT

After reading his homily, Francis gave them each their ring and red hat, the colour of which, along with their vestments, is to remind them that they should be willing to shed their blood for the faith.

Since his election as the first Latin American pope, Francis’ has often broken the mould used by his predecessors in picking cardinals. Often he has preferred men from developing nations and smaller cities, rather than from major capitals where having a cardinal used to be considered automatic.

Archbishop Leonardo Steiner of Manaus, Brazil, becomes the first cardinal from the Amazon region, underscoring Francis’ concern for indigenous people and the environment.

Another unexpected new cardinal elector is Archbishop Giorgio Marengo, an Italian who is the Catholic Church’s administrator in Mongolia. At 48, he is the youngest of the new cardinal electors.

With new cardinal, Pope Francis puts stamp on Church future

The new cardinals attend the consistory ceremony to elevate Roman Catholic prelates to the rank of cardinal, at Saint Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican, August 27, 2022. REUTERS

Mongolia has fewer than 1,500 Catholics but is strategically significant because it borders with China, where the Vatican is trying to improve the situation for Catholics.

“The Holy Father cares for the Church wherever it is in the world. (We) feel that a tiny community is as important as a large community,” he told Reuters before the ceremony.

One significant appointment from the richer countries is that of Bishop Robert McElroy of San Diego, California, who is seen as a progressive. By giving San Diego its first cardinal, Francis bypassed conservative archbishops in San Francisco and Los Angeles.

McElroy has been an outspoken ally of Francis’ pastoral approach to social issues, such as protection of the environment and a more welcoming approach to gay Catholics.

He also has opposed conservative U.S. clergymen who want to ban Catholic politicians, including President Joe Biden and House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi, from receiving communion because of their support of abortion rights.

RELATED STORIES

Aging Pope Francis admits he must slow down, or quit

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.

Read Next
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: Catholic Church, Pope Francis, Vatican City
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.



© Copyright 1997-2023 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.