MANILA - Pope Francis has named 13 new cardinals including Filipino Archbishop Jose Advincula of Capiz.
In a surprise announcement made during his regular Sunday Angelus prayer, the pontiff said he would elevate 13 churchmen to the Sacred College of Cardinals in a consistory at the Vatican on November 28.
Advincula, who has been serving as the archbishop of Capiz since 2012, will be the ninth Filipino cardinal, following: Luis Antonio Tagle, Gaudencio Rosales, Rufino Santos, and Jaime Sin, who all served as Manila archbishop; Ricardo Vidal and Julio Rosales who both served as Cebu archbishop; Orlando Quevedo, Cotabato's archbishop emeritus; and Jose Sanchez, who served as prefect for the Congregation for the Clergy.
Prior to his appointment as the fourth archbishop of Capiz, Advincula served as the bishop of San Carlos for 10 years, according to the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines.
The 68-year-old cardinal-elect was born in Dumalag, Capiz and was ordained priest in 1976.
Cardinals, traditionally called "princes of the Church," serve as advisers to the pontiff. But their main duty is to attend the conclave where they elect a new pope in case of a papal death or abdication.
While there are still four living Filipino cardinals, only Advincula and Tagle would be able to participate in a possible conclave, as cardinals who are already over the age of 80 are no longer eligible.
Traditionally, the archbishop of Manila and Cebu are made cardinals, since both are considered prime archdioceses in the Philippines, given their size and influence in the country. But since his election, Pope Francis veered away from this tradition and has appointed cardinals from unexpected places, including countries where Catholics are considered minorities.
Meanwhile, other churchmen chosen as new cardinals are as follows:
- Antoine Kambanda, archbishop of Kilgali, Rwanda
- Wilton Gregory, archbishop of Washington
- Celestino Aós Braco, archbishop of Santiago, Chile
- Cornelius Sim, apostolic vicar of Brunei
- Augusto Paolo Lojudice, archbishop of Siena, Italy
- Mario Grech, secretary general of the Synod of Bishops
- Marcello Semeraro, newly-appointed prefect for the Congregation of the Causes of Saints
- Mauro Gambetti, guardian of the Franciscan Sacro Convento in Assisi
- Felipe Arizmendi Esquivel, archbishop emeritus of San Cristóbal de Las Casas in Mexico
- Silvano Tomasi, former permanent observer at the United Nations in Geneva
- Raniero Cantalamessa, preacher of the papal household
- Enrico Feroci, pastor of the Shrine of Divine Love
The new cardinals will be formally inducted to the College of Cardinals in a ceremony called the consistory, where they will receive the traditional red biretta and cardinalatial ring from the pope.
However, no details are given yet as to how the ceremony would be held amid strict travel restrictions across the world due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Currently, most papal liturgies and other events are held with limited participation both from members of the clergy and the public.