In the wake of Pope Francis’ eagerly anticipated announcement of the names of the new Cardinals, the Director of the Press Office of the Holy See, Father Federico Lombardi, SJ, offered the following observations:
Pope has adhered to the rule of 120 Cardinals under 80 years of age who
will be eligible to vote in a papal election.
Currently there were 13
seats “vacant”; 3 others will be “vacant” by the end of May.
So the Pope
has chosen 16 electors.
Of the 16 eligible to vote, 4 are
members of the Curia (i.e., ¼ of the total) and 12 are residential
archbishops or bishops, all from different countries .
distribution of electors who are residential prelates is well
distributed among the different continents: Two from Europe, three from
North and Central America, three from South America, two from Africa,
and two from Asia.
The choice of Cardinals of Burkina Faso and Haiti shows concern for people struck by poverty.
residential prelates were chosen from places not traditionally
considered Cardinalatial Sees (namely, Perugia in Italy, and Cotabato on
the island of Mindanao in the Philippines).
Among the Cardinals
who are not electors, one should notice Archbishop Capovilla, the
secretary of Pope John XXIII (who will soon be canonized during the 50th anniversary of the Second Vatican Council).
Archbishop Capovilla, aged 98, is the oldest of the Cardinals-elect; the youngest, Bishop Langlois (55 years old).