Wednesday 26 July 2017

Pope surprises the Church with elevation of outsiders

Altar boys wait to see Pope Francis at Casal Bernocchi on the southern outskirts of Rome. REUTERS/Remo Casilli
Altar boys wait to see Pope Francis at Casal Bernocchi on the southern outskirts of Rome. REUTERS/Remo Casilli

Philip Pullella

Pope Francis is to elevate five Catholic clerics from outside Italy and the Vatican to the rank of cardinal, the elite group of churchmen who are his closest advisers and can enter a conclave to choose his successor.

The Pope made the surprise announcement during his weekly Sunday address in Rome yesterday. The five come from Mali, Spain, Sweden, Laos and El Salvador. The fact that none of the five is Italian and none holds Vatican positions underscores the Pope's conviction that the Church is a global institution that should become increasingly less Italian-centric.

Irish Independent

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