By Vatican News staff writer
Pope Francis has appointed a new archbishop in the Archdiocese of Karachi, Pakistan. On Thursday, he accepted the resignation of Cardinal Joseph Coutts of Karachi, who stepped down on reaching the canonical retirement age of 75 in July 2020. In his place, the Pope appointed Bishop Benny Mario Travas of Multan as Archbishop.
Bishop Travas was born on November 21 1966 and ordained a priest on December 7, 1990. Appointed Apostolic Administrator of Multan in 2014, he was nominated its bishop on May 29, 2015 and was consecrated bishop on August 15, 2015.
Cardinal Coutts was born on July 21 1945 in Amristar, in the diocese of Jullundur, in British India. After his priestly studies and training at the Christ the King Seminary in Karachi, he was ordained a priest in Lahore on January 9, 1971.
After pursuing higher ecclesiastical studies in Rome he returned home and served as professor of philosophy at Christ the King Regional Seminary, Karachi, rector of St. Mary's Minor Seminary, Lahore and later diocesan vicar general.
On May 5, 1988, Saint Pope John Paul II appointed him Coadjutor Bishop of Hyderabad in Pakistan. He succeeded as Bishop of Hyderabad on September 1, 1990. On 27 June 1998, he appointed him Bishop of Faisalabad, where he served until January 25 2012 when he was transferred to Karachi as Archbishop.
Pope Francis created him cardinal at the consistory of June 28, 2018.
Cardinal Coutts served as president of the Pakistan Catholic Bishops’ Conference (PCBC) from 2011 until the end of 2017, and as chairman of Caritas Pakistan from 1998 to 2017. Bishop Travas is the current chairman of Caritas.