Pope Francis names 15 new Cardinals; reflects diversity and growth in Africa & Asia

Pope Francis
Pope Francis has announced the names of 15 new cardinals; selected from 14 nations across the globe. This selection reflects the diversity of the church and its growth in Africa and Asia.

The nations include nations like Tonga, New Zealand, Cape Verde, Myanmar, Ethiopia, Thailand and Vietnam. Another is from Sicily, where the Church in recent decades has been galvanising public rejection of the Mafia.

Referring to the Vatican, Francis told faithful in St Peter’s Square that the churchmen come “from every continent” and “show the indelible tie with the church of Rome to churches in the world.”

In addition to the 15 new cardinals – who are under 80 and thus eligible to vote for the next pope – Francis bestowed the honour on five older churchmen. He said they distinguished themselves for their work in the Vatican bureaucracy, and in diplomatic service in giving witness to their love of Christ and God’s people. Those included men from Peru and Mozambique.

Speaking from a Vatican window to a crowd in St Peter’s Square, Francis made another surprise announcement. He said that on 12 and 13 February he would lead a meeting of all cardinals to “reflect on the orientations and proposals for the reform of the Roman Curia,” the Vatican’s administrative bureaucracy.

Francis is using his papacy, which began in March 2013, to root out corruption, inefficiency and other problems in the Curia.


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