Pope Francis’ Consistory: a celebration of faith and culture
Festive atmosphere in the Apostolic Palace
From every corner of the world, faithful, friends and dignitaries of the Church arrived in the Apostolic Palace to celebrate the creation of 21 new cardinals by Pope Francis in the ninth Consistory of his pontificate. From Tabora and Juba to Penang and Cordoba, the event wove a mosaic of cultures, uniting people through faith and celebration.
A Triumph of Cultures and Traditions
Hundreds of people filled the spaces between the Lapidary Gallery and the Hall of Blessings, reflecting a rainbow of nationalities and traditions. A light and joyful atmosphere permeated the place, with selfies, gifts, and bows, underlining the universality of the Church in its embrace of different cultures.
Cardinals: Voice and Bridge between Peoples
Cardinals like Giorgio Marengo and Stephen Chow Sau-yan not only represent their nation, but also act as communicative bridges between different cultures and the Vatican. As Marengo shakes the hands of his counterparts, the importance of being ‘a bridging Church’, connecting different communities and facilitating dialogue shines through.
The Blessing of Duty and Service
Victor Manuel Fernández, new Cardinal and Prefect of the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith, expresses joy not for the honours received, but for the opportunity to dedicate his life to the Church and to Christ. His genuine service and humility shine through his desire to do good for the Christian community.
Varying Emotions and Dedications
The newly appointed Cardinal Claudio Gugerotti, Prefect of the Dicastery for the Oriental Churches, attracted a long line of devotees eager to offer their congratulations and respect. The connection with Greek Catholic Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuk echoes the years of service and love for the Church that pervades these celebrations.
Commitment to the Young and Needed
Attention also turns to the young and marginalised, with figures like Angel Fernandez Artime, Rector Major of the Salesians, expressing a fervent desire to humbly serve the Church. His commitment goes further, extending to the young, the exploited and the poor, embodying the essence of service and dedication.
The Celebration of the First Cardinal of South Sudan
Musical notes permeating the air from the hands of South Sudanese celebrated the first cardinal of their land, Stephen Ameyu Martin Mulla. Amidst warm embraces and good wishes, the community paid tribute to a figure who represents hope and change for their country.
Resilience and the Strength of the Church
Between toasts and celebrations, François-Xavier Bustillo expressed the need for a society composed of individuals who offer everything. Not just that they take, but that they give generously, embodying the love and devotion that the Church requires and symbolises.
A Node of Connections and Celebrations
These courtesy visits and celebrations in the Apostolic Palace, though marked by gestures of lightness and joy, are also powerful manifestations of the unity and diversity of the universal Catholic Church. Every smile, every embrace, and every blessing shed light on bonds old and new, underlining the shared power of faith that unites people from every corner of the globe.
With this, the Consistory becomes not only an event that recognises and celebrates new cardinals, but also a moment that exalts the global community, demonstrating how the Church, in its many cultural expressions, remains united in its commitment to faith and human service.