Among them are two archbishops from U.S.

By Michelle Bauman

Vatican City (CNA/EWTN News) — Pope Benedict XVI named 22 new cardinals on Jan. 6, including two prominent American archbishops.

“This is an honor for these outstanding church leaders as well as an honor for the Church in the United States,” said Archbishop Kurtz of Louisville, vice president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. “As men of prayer, wisdom and dedication, they will bring many talents and graces to their new roles as advisors to the Holy Father.”

The pope also announced a consistory for Feb. 18, at which the new cardinals will be formally elevated to their new rank. 

Two Americans – Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan of New York and Archbishop Edwin F. O’Brien, Pro Grand Master of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem – were included among the nominees. The two men are 61 and 72 years old, respectively.

Archbishop Dolan is the current president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. He leads the Archdiocese of New York, home to about 2.6 million Catholics.

Archbishop O’Brien is currently the apostolic administrator of the Archdiocese of Baltimore, where he served as archbishop from October 2007 until August 2011, when the Holy Father appointed him Pro Grand Master of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem. He will continue to shepherd the Archdiocese of Baltimore until a successor is installed.

In a statement responding to his nomination, Archbishop Dolan said that he is “honored, humbled, and grateful,” but added, “let’s be frank: this is not about Timothy Dolan.” He explained that the appointment is both “an affirmation of love from the pope” and a “summons to its unworthy archbishop” to continue serving Christ.

The New York archbishop asked for prayers as he assumes his new role.

Archbishop O’Brien was also quick to deflect attention from himself. “While this honor may be a reflection of my new position, I believe it is also the result of the great collaboration and zealous faith that I have so consistently experienced in the Church in Baltimore,” he said. “I am grateful to our Holy Father for his confidence in me and pledge my continued support and fraternal love as I continue to serve this historic archdiocese and the Church in the Holy Land.”

Archbishop Thomas C. Collins of Toronto and Bishop John Tong Hon of Hong Kong were also among the new cardinals, which were announced by Pope Benedict in St. Peter’s Square on Jan. 6, after delivering his midday Angelus address.

Ten of the remaining nominees are from the Roman Curia, including Archbishop Fernando Filoni, Prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples.

Cardinals advise the pope and vote in papal elections. However, four of the new cardinals will not be able to vote in the conclave because they are over the 80-year age limit.



Posted Monday, January 09, 2012 7:06 AM By Maryanne Leonard
Archbishop Dolan is a gift to us all. May God bless him always and give him strength in his important work, which he does so well.

Posted Monday, January 09, 2012 11:13 AM By nino mark
It takes a strong spine to minister in New York City. May God bless him!

Posted Monday, January 09, 2012 11:28 AM By keithp
In all seriousness, why so many Italians? Certainly, the Faith is a bit more evenly distributed among the Americas, Asia and Africa? I realize the Chruch is not a Democracy with some expectation of representation based on population.

Posted Monday, January 09, 2012 12:07 PM By Bud 
I jumped up and down with joy and a great big YESSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!!! for Archbishop Dolan! I am simply not as familiar with Archbishop O’Brien as I am Archbishop Dolan but trusting in the appointment also!

Posted Monday, January 09, 2012 12:57 PM By D Paul
Way to go Eddie O. Semper Fi.

Posted Monday, January 09, 2012 4:27 PM By dbwheeler
Can anyone explain just what a Cardinal does besides electing a pope? All I know about cardinals is what I’ve read in novels in which they always seem to plotting how to achieve ever more power and scheming how to bring down the papacy. Somehow I suspect those cartoonish representations are just a ‘tad’ cynical and jaundiced, but why are cardinals so often presented as villains?

Posted Monday, January 09, 2012 7:12 PM By gerson
why so many italians–curia italians at that? to assure that the next pope will follow the agenda that is already being planned for him. clearly, pastoral ministry is the least concern of these would-be pope-makers.

Posted Tuesday, January 10, 2012 1:29 AM By Traditional Angelo
dbwheeler, A Cardinal is a Cleric of the Church that advises the Holy Father. They are supposed to be his closest advisers. But sometimes that is not the case. Some Cardinals turn out to be the Popes worst enemies. They wear crimson garb as a sign that they are willing to shed their blood for the Pope. At times they wear this color hypocriticaly. gerson, Most of the Cardinal elects are men faithful to the Church. The Holy Father does not choose by nationality, but by learned men of the Church that will secure its continuation for Christ. The Italians know more about the Church and how it works than any other men from any other Nation. Let us be grateful.

Posted Tuesday, January 10, 2012 3:07 AM By DC
I am from Baltimore. O’Brien has really helped cleaned up alot for his short tenure here.

Posted Tuesday, January 10, 2012 9:33 AM By dbwheeler
Thanks, T.Angelo. Are they what is called the magisterium? And that makes sense about why so many are Italian.

Posted Tuesday, January 10, 2012 10:51 AM By Jerry
I wonder what the Vatican’s cardinal selection criteria was, and why all of a sudden 22 cardinals? Did that many reach the magic manadatory retirement age of 85 recently? I guess their selection means they are eligible to be replacements of the pope. Let’s hope and pray they are conservative, bordering as far-right/correct at least of being near traditional. We need to pray for their souls that they do God’s Holy Will.

Posted Tuesday, January 10, 2012 12:56 PM By Kenneth M. Fisher
I believe that the requirement that Cardinals over 80 years of age is a big mistake; however at least for now we have to live with it. Wasn’t O’Brien at one time the Vicar of Military Affairs for the U.S.? The highest criterion should be Spirituality! God bless, yours in Their Hearts, Kenneth M. Fisher

Posted Wednesday, January 11, 2012 1:33 AM By muratori
traditional angelo: you are wrong in saying that a cardinal is a cleric. cleric refers to the the orders of deacon, sub-deacon, exorcist, porter, lector, acolyte. cardinal was originally the title of the head of an important roman church. it had and has absolutely nothing to do with the clerical state. indeed, there have been lay cardinals, so you see one does not even, in theory, have to be a deacon or priest to be a cardinal.

Posted Thursday, January 12, 2012 10:37 AM By Kevin +
ar Excellency Cardinal Timothy Dolan, My heart filled Congratulations!!! On being elected into the College of Cardinals of Our Holy Catholic Church. May your election and elevation inspire and lift souls all over the Americas, Asia, Africa, Europe and All over the World. You have a hilarious, joyful, colourful,wonderful and positive spirit which inspires and uplifts souls. You have a good, great and glorious future ahead, as a Pope in the years to come. I will join you in prayer in communion with the Holy Father and all the Cardinals, Bishops, clergy and faithful on 18th February 2012 to witness the Holy Ceremony via EWTN. Yours Faithfully in Christ Jesus, Kevin + A Colourful Soul ….. Holy Land ……

Posted Thursday, January 12, 2012 11:00 AM By JLS
Catholic Encyclopedia: Cleric: “A person who has been legitimately received into the ranks of the clergy. By clergy in the strict sense is meant the entire ecclesiastical hierarchy.”

Posted Thursday, January 12, 2012 2:02 PM By MacDonald
Re: Muratori’s comment: “cleric refers to the the orders of deacon, sub-deacon, exorcist, porter, lector, acolyte.” Actually, in the Roman Catholic Church, the word “cleric” means “a member of the clergy,” that is, someone who is ordained a deacon, priest or bishop. [We no longer have sub-deacons and the other minor orders. People PREPARING for ordination do receive the “ministry” of acolyte, lector, etc., but these are not Holy Orders.]

Posted Thursday, January 12, 2012 8:40 PM By Kenneth M. Fisher
MacDonald, 2:02 PM, How right you are, and how sad it is! You see in the Novus Ordo they no longer receive the minor order of Exorcist as well, the Traditionalist still include all of the minor orders. God bless, yours in Their Hearts, Kenneth M. Fisher

Posted Saturday, January 14, 2012 7:28 PM By Traditional Angelo
muratori, You’ve been answered. I’d like to add that Cardinal comes from Latin, and it means Hinge, as in the hinge of a door. When a Pope dies these Hinges today enter the Sistine Chapel to elect a new Pope. Traditionaly after the Cardinals or Hinges have all entered, the doors were nailed shut, thus Conclave (with a nail). There is an explanation for every term used in the Church. Neat, is’nt it? Also, a priest told me that any baptized male Catholic celibate can be elected to the Papacy. Cleric or not.