POPE Francis has warned the 13 newly nominated Cardinals against using their new power for corruption or personal gain.
The head of the Catholic Church went off his prescribed script to warn the appointees against corruption and egotism. ‘Let’s think of so many types of corruption in the priesthood’, said the Argentine, going off his prewritten script. ‘You won’t be pastors close to the people’ he warned, ‘You’ll just be ‘Eminence’. And if you feel this way, you’ll have strayed off the road’.
The cardinal raising ceremony is the seventh in the Pope’s tenure to date and was marked by restrictions incurred by the Covid-19 pandemic. Two of the appointees were unable to travel to the Vatican from their bases in Brunei and the Philippines but attended virtually via large screens.
The pope also appointed the Church’s first African American cardinal, Wilton Gregory, who said his new position was ‘an affirmation of black Catholics in the US’. Francis also commented on recent racial tensions in the US, saying ‘there is an awareness now of the need for racial reconciliation’ that he has not ‘seen at this level and at this intensity before’.
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