On January 12, Pope Francis announced that there would be nineteen new cardinals in the Catholic Church. The interesting thing about the selections is that a majority of the new cardinals come from places other than Europe, North America, or the Vatican itself. Here are the names and places of all the new cardinals. Note the variety of locales.
• Fernando Sebastian Aguilar, C. M. F., Archbishop Emeritus, Pamplona, Spain
• Ricardo Ezzati Andrello, S.D.B., Archbishop of Santiago del Cile, Chile
• Lorenzo Baldisseri, Titular Archbishop of Dioclenziana, Secretary General of the Synod of Bishops (Vatican)
• Gualtiero Bassetti, Archbishop of Perugia-Città della Pieve, Italy
• Loris Francesco Capovilla, Titular Archbihop of Mesembria, former personal secretary of Blessed Pope John XXIII
• Kelvin Edward Felix, Archbishop emeritus of Castries
• Jean-Pierre Kutwa, Archbishop of Abidjan, Ivory Coast
• Gérald Cyprien Lacroix, Archbishop of Québec, Canada
• Chibly Langlois, Bishop of Les Cayes, Haiti
• Gerhard Ludwig Muller, Archbishop-Bishop emeritus of Regensburg, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (Vatican)
• Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster, Great Britain
• Philippe Nakellentuba Ouédraogo, Archbishop of Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso
• Pietro Parolin, Titular Archbishop of Acquapendente, Secretary of State
• Mario Auerelio Poli, Archbishop of Buenos Aires, Argentina
• Orlando B. Quevedo, O.M.I., Archbishop of Cotabato, Philippines
• Leopoldo José Brenes Solórzano, Archbishop of Managua, Nicaragua
• Andrew Yeom Soo jung, Archbishop of Seoul, Korea
• Beniamino Stella, Titular Archbishop of Midila, Prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy (Vatican)
• Orani João Tempesta, O.Cist., Archbishop of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
There are several aspects of these appointments that your students can research if time allows.
Group the cardinals in various categories. Here are some sample ways:
• Cardinals from the Vatican central bureaucracy – those with “titular archbishop” after their names
• Cardinals from countries with the largest number of Catholics: Brazil and the Philippines
• Only non-Vatican bureaucrat from Europe: Arch. Vincent Nichols
• Sole North American appointment: Arch. Gérald Lacroix
• Cardinals with Distinguished Service who are over 80 years old: Archbishops Loris Capovilla, Archbishop Aguilar, C.M.F.; Archbishop Felix
• Cardinals from Central, South America and the Caribbean: Archbishop Solórzano of Managua, Nicaragua; Archbishop Tempesta, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Archbishop Poli of Buenos Aires, Argentina; Archbishop Andrello of Santiago, Chile; Archbishop Langlois of Les Cayes, Haiti
• Cardinals from Africa and Asia: Archbishop Kutwa of Abidjan, Ivory Coast; Archbishop of Ouédraogo of Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso; Archbishop Quevado, of Cotabato, Philippines, Archbishop Soo jung of Seoul, Korea
Research several topics related to the title cardinal. For example:
• The history behind the college of cardinals’ size
• The significance of turning 80 years old for cardinals
• The responsibilities of cardinals versus those who are just archbishops
• The reason why Pope Francis may have not appointed any cardinals in the US
• The reason why it is important for there to be more cardinals from the Southern Hemisphere
• The nature of “titular archbishops”
Research the places where the cardinals come from. (If you want each student to have his or her own cardinal to research, select cardinals out of the college that represent the global nature of the Church.) Include in a report:
• Size of diocese or archdiocese in terms of square miles and population
• Name of the cathedral
• Information about the cardinal-elect such as age, length of time in position, former positions, interests, etc.
• Names of any other bishops, auxiliary or emeritus, also in the archdiocese
• Literacy rate for people in archdiocese (may have to find the info. for a larger area, in some cases the country as a whole)
• Poverty rate for people in archdiocese
• Other religions practiced by a significant number of people in area
After having researched the cardinals’ archdioceses, students can compare the information they found.
• How much do the archdioceses range in size? Population? Number of priests and religious? Numbers of bishops?
• How many cardinals head archdioceses that are in countries that are primarily Catholic? Primarily Christian? Primarily non-Christian? How might these different situations affect the cardinals?
• How many cardinals head archdioceses that are wealthy versus poor, literate versus illiterate, and so on? What are implications for these cardinals?
Suggestion: Group the students by the cardinals’ region so that your students might be able to research and identify issues facing the Church in Africa, Asia, Central and South America, Europe, North America, and Oceania.
Note the religious orders of some of the cardinals. Several of the cardinals belong to religious orders. Ask the students to provide more information on these religious orders.