By Robin Gomes
Pope Francis will create 14 new cardinal from 11 countries during the Ordinary Public Consistory in Rome’s St. Peter’s Basilica Thursday evening, June 28.
The Pope first announced the names of the new cardinals on Sunday, May 20, following his midday “Regina Coeli” prayer and blessing in St. Peter’s Square.
The cardinals-designate are from Bolivia, Iraq, Italy, Japan, Pakistan, Poland, Portugal, Peru, Madagascar, Mexico and Spain. The Pope explained that the places from where the new cardinals come “expresses the universality of the Church, which continues to announce the merciful love of God to all men and women on earth”. He said their nominations “manifest the unbreakable bond between the See of Peter and the local Churches throughout the world”.
The new Cardinals are:
- His Beatitude Louis Raphaël I Sako – Chaldean Catholic Patriarch of Babylon (Iraq)
- Archbishop Luis Ladaria –Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (Spain)
- Archbishop Angelo De Donatis – Vicar General of Rome (Italy)
- Archbishop Giovanni Angelo Becciu – Substitute of the Vatican Secretary of State and Special Delegate for the Sovereign Military Order of Malta (Italy)
- Archbishop Konrad Krajewski – Almoner of the Office of Papal Charities (Poland)
- Archbishop Joseph Coutts of Karachi (Pakistan)
- Bishop António dos Santos Marto of Leiria-Fátima (Portugal)
- Archbishop Pedro Barreto of Huancayo (Peru)
- Archbishop Desiré Tsarahazana of Toamasina (Madagascar)
- Archbishop Giuseppe Petrocchi of L’Aquila (Italy)
- Archbishop Thomas Aquinas Manyo of Osaka (Japan)
- Emeritus Archbishop Sergio Obeso Rivera of Xalapa (Mexico)
- Emeritus Bishop Toribio Ticona Porco of the Territorial Prelature of Corocoro (Bolivia)
- Father Aquilino Bocos Merino of the Claretian order (Spain)
The Pope said he chose the last three for their distinguished service to the Church.
What is a consistory?
The consistory is not a Holy Mass but an assembly of cardinals with or without the pope to deal with important Church matters, such as fixing the dates of beatification and canonization and the creation of new cardinals such as of June 28.
During the Middle Ages, popes used to convoke consistories to decide on important issues. The cardinals are the closest advisers and collaborators of the Pope in the government of the worldwide Catholic Church.
Blessed Paul VI used to convoke a consistory every time he came back from an international trip, to share his impressions and exchange opinions on the trip with the cardinals.
Pope Benedict XVI announced his historic resignation on Feb. 11, 2013, during a Consistory for the Canonization of the Martyrs of Otranto.
The consistory of Feb. 22, 2014 by Pope Francis was preceded by an extraordinary consistory on the issues of the family.
Ceremony of creation of new cardinals
Thursday’s Consistory is a ceremony during which Pope Francis will create the new cardinals and induct them as members of the worldwide body of cardinals known as the College of Cardinals.
Dressed in their red robes, the cardinals-designate will profess the Creed and then approach Pope Francis one by one who will place the red biretta (hat) on each one of them and give them the cardinal’s ring.
Each cardinal will be assigned a titular church of Rome. This is symbolic of the cardinals being part of the Diocese of Rome, whose bishop is the Pope, successor of the first Bishop of Rome, St. Peter.
Blessed Paul VI reformed the rite of the consistory for the creation of new cardinal in 1969, giving it a liturgical outlook, though the event had not previously been seen as a liturgical event. The rite included prayers with the imposition of the red biretta and the ring, emphasizing the spiritual bond between the cardinals and the pope.
Pope Benedict XVI further reformed and simplified the rite of the creation of new cardinals in 2012, maintaining Pope Paul VI’s vision of a liturgical framework.
The Code of Canon Law speaks about two types of consistory: ordinary and extraordinary. An extraordinary consistory is called in particular cases, and all the cardinals are called to take part in it. An ordinary consistory takes place when the Pope needs the cardinals’ counsel on some important, though normal, issue, or to give solemnity to the Pope’s decision, such as the approval of the canonization of saints.