The Pope Francisco has begun this Monday two days of meetings with all the cardinals of the world, including the latest cardinals named this weekend to be electors of the next Pope. This summit of the College of Cardinals has not been held in this format since 2015. According to experts, the Argentine Pope has taken another step to pre-construct a possible future conclave (the meeting in which the new popes are appointed) in which there is a majority of like-minded voters to his line, something that not many pontiffs have achieved in the history of the Church.
Francis’ decision to convene this unprecedented meeting comes after, during the year, once again the information circulated that it is thinking of retiring for their health problemssomething that he himself and many of his closest collaborators have denied.
At the summit the new Constitution is discussed reforms the Roman Curia, the ‘Praedicate Evangelium’an initiative of the Pontiff that entered into force last June after almost nine years of work and that has suffered some reluctance from members of the Church.
With this latest wave of appointments of cardinals, the Pope has already achieved that, in the college of cardinals, there are 83 cardinal electors appointed by him, while those who obtained this promotion by Benedict XVI are now only 38, and those who they did under John Paul II, 11.
Attention to the peripheries of the world
The number of cardinals from Europe, once very high, is now 53 (40.1% of the total), while the number of those from America has risen to 38 (28.8%), that of those from Africa to 17 (12.9%), and Asia and Oceania to 24 (18.2%). A total of 69 countries currently have representation and the right to vote if it is necessary to hold a new conclave in the short term.
So it is confirmed that Jorge Mario Bergoglio keep on the path of your remodeling of the catholic church with special attention to the so-called peripheries of the world, to the areas where Christians suffer the greatest persecution, and where humanitarian crises or conflicts rooted. So much so that among the new cardinals there is an Indian, Filipe Neri António Sebastião do Rosário Ferrão, archbishop of Goa and Damão, the Salesian Virgilio do Carmo da Silva, the first cardinal in the history of East Timor, and the Italian missionary Giorgio Marengo, prefect Apostolic Church of Ulan Baton, in Mongolia. At 48, Marengo is the youngest cardinal with the right to vote.
Spain has added a new cardinal which brings the number of Spanish voters to six: it is Fernando Vergez Alzagagovernor of the Vatican City State and member of the ultra-conservative group of the Legionaries of Christ.
Priests from Singapore, Nigeria, Paraguay, South Korea, Colombia and Brazil, among other countries, have also become new ‘princes of the Church’. They all make up the list of 132 cardinals with the right to vote in the future conclave and who have been invited to participate in the meetings in the Vatican.