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Friday, January 6, 2012

Pope Names 22 New Cardinals

Pope Benedict XVI has named 22 new cardinals, including two prelates from the US.

At his Angelus audience on January 6, the Pope announced that a consistory will be held on February 18, and named the 22 prelates who will receive red hats. 

Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York will be among the new cardinals, as will Archbishop Edwin O’Brien, the former Archbishop of Baltimore who was named last year as grand master of the Knights of the Holy Sepulchre. Archbishop Thomas Collins of Toronto was also on the Pope’s list.

The Pope named two leaders of the Eastern Catholic churches as cardinals: Major Archbishop George Alencherry of Ernakulam-Angamaly, the head of India’s Syro-Malabar Church; and Major Archbishop Lucian Muresan of Fagaras and Alba Julia, the head of the Romanian Catholic Church. 

Among the new cardinals, 10 are currently serving in senior positions on the Roman Curia, while 8 are archbishops of major metropolitan sees. Pope Benedict also announced that he would honor 5 clerics—Major Archbishop Muresan and 4 priests—by raising them to the College of Cardinals in recognition of their outstanding service to the Church, although they are above the age of 80 and therefore ineligible to participate in a papal conclave.

The new members will strengthen the European complexion of the College of Cardinals and the Italian influence. Of the 22 new cardinals, 16 will be European, and 7 Italian. Only one new cardinal is from Latin America, and none from Africa.

With its new members, the College of Cardinals will have 214 members, of whom 125 will be eligible electors. Pope Benedict has exercised his authority to exceed the normal limit of 120 cardinal-electors. Among the electors, a slim majority—64 of the 125—will have been appointed by this Pontiff. 

The number of cardinal-electors will drop soon after the consistory, when Cardinal Rodolfo Quezada Toruño, the retired Archbishop of Guatemala, celebrates his 80th birthday on March 8. Ten other cardinal-electors will reach the same age before the end of 2012.

The newly appointed cardinals are:
  1. Archbishop Santos Abril Y Castellò, the Archpriest of the Roman basilica of St. Mary Major;
  2. Major Archbishop George Alencherry of Ernakulam-Angamaly, the leader of the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church;
  3. Father Karl Becker, SJ, a former professor at the Pontifical Gregorian University and consultant to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith;
  4. Archbishop Giuseppe Bertelli, President of the Pontifical Commission for Vatican City State and President of the Governorate of the same State;
  5. Archbishop Giuseppe Betori of Florence;
  6. Archbishop João Braz de Aviz, prefect of the Congregation for Religious;
  7. Archbishop Domenico Calcagno, president of the Administration of the Patrimony of the Apostolic See;
  8. Archbishop Francesco Coccopalmerio, president of the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts;
  9. Archbishop Thomas Christopher Collins of Toronto;
  10. Archbishop Timothy Michael Dolan of New York;
  11. Archbishop Dominik Duka of Prague;
  12. Archbishop Willem Jacobus Eijk of Utrecht;
  13. Archbishop Fernando Filoni, the prefect of the Congregation for Evangelization;
  14. Father Prospero Grech, OSA, a theology professor and to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith;
  15. Archbishop Manuel Monteiro de Castro, was named only yesterday as head of the Apostolic Penitentiary;
  16. Major Archbishop Lucian Muresan of Fagaras and Alba Julia, the leader of the Romanian Catholic Church;
  17. Archbishop Edwin O'Brien, Grand Master Knights of the Holy Sepulchre;
  18. Father Julien Ries, for years a professor at the Catholic University of Louvain;
  19. Archbishop John Tong Hon, Bishop of Hong Kong;
  20. Archbishop Antonio Maria Veglio, the president of the Pontifical Council for Migrants;
  21. Archbishop Giuseppe Versaldi, president of the Prefecture for Economic Affairs of the Holy See; and
  22. Archbishop Rainer Maria Woelk of Berlin.

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