By Deborah Castellano Lubov

Cardinal-elects Jose F. Advincula of Capiz  of the Philippines and Cornelius Sim of Brunei have received a warm welcome by Cardinal Charles Bo of Yangon, Myanmar, President of the Federation of Asian Bishops’ Conferences (FABC).

Myanmar’s first Cardinal issued an Oct. 26 statement provided to ZENIT English welcoming the new cardinals whom Pope Francis has selected for the Church of Asia.

During his Oct. 25 Angelus address, the Pope announced a consistory for the creation of 13 new cardinals to take place on November 28. Given the resurgence of COVID19, details regarding the consistory are still being defined.

The Cardinals-elect are: Bishop  Mario Grech, Secretary-General of the Synod of Bishops; Bishop  Marcello Semeraro, Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints; Archbishop  Antoine Kambanda of Kigali, Rwanda; Archbishop Wilton Gregory of Washington; Archbishop José Advincula of Capiz, Philippines; Archbishop Celestino Aós Braco of Santiago de Chile; Bishop  Cornelius Sim, titular Bishop of  Puzia di Numidia and Vicar Apostolic of Brunei, Kuala Lumpur; Archbishop Augusto Paolo Lojudice of Siena-Colle Val d’Elsa-Montalcino; Fra Mauro Gambetti, Conventual Franciscan, Custodian of the Sacred Convent of Assisi.

The future Cardinal Emerituses, due to their advanced age, chosen are: Bishop  Felipe Arizmendi Esquivel, Bishop emeritus of San Cristóbal de las Casas, Mexico; Archbishop Silvano M. Tomasi, titular Archbishop of Asolo, Apostolic Nuncio; Fra Raniero Cantalamessa, Capuchin, Preacher of the Papal Household; Msgr Enrico Feroci, parish priest of Holy Mary of the Divine Love in Castel di Leva.

Faithful Son, Erudite Scholar, & Enlightened Shepherd  — Cardinal-designate Advincula

Cardinal Bo said we are “immensely blessed” to hear the good news that Pope Francis has announced the good news of “our esteemed” Archbishop Jose F. Advincula of Capiz in the Philippines as the  Cardinal-designate.

“This is a great honor to the whole of Philippines and Asia,” he said.

“This call to service,” the Cardinal noted, “is a familiar territory to our dear Archbishop, shepherding the huge diocese of Capiz.   He was ordained a priest of the Archdiocese of Capiz on April 14, 1976. He held challenging responsibilities throughout his priestly life.”

Pope John Paul II appointed him Bishop of San Carlos on July 25, 2001 and he received his episcopal consecration on September 8, 2001.  On November 9, 2011, Pope Benedict XVI named him Archbishop of Capiz.  Within the Filipino Bishops Conference, he has been active member of the Commission for the Doctrine of the Faith and Commission for Indigenous Peoples.

“An erudite scholar and a faithful son of the Catholic Church,” Cardinal Bo underscored, “the Archbishop brings to his mission a pastoral passion and commitment, much lauded by his people.”

“Pope Francis,” he noted, “has chosen an enlightened  shepherd to intensify the Gospel of Justice to his people  and collaborate in the new mission of creating a  world of equity in the post Covid era.    The archbishop is blessed with both the spiritual resolve and intellectual acumen to  face the challenges thrown by the Holy Father.”

Cardinal Bo said we warmly welcome His Grace to the College of Cardinals, pledging our prayers and friendship in the sacred pilgrimage of service of Faith and promotion of Justice.

Our Cup of Joy Overflows, 1st Cardinal of Brunei — Cardinal-elect Sim

“Our cup of joy overflows today,” Cardinal Bo said, referring to Pope Francis’ bestowing “on our dear brother Bishop Cornelius Sim, apostolic vicar of Brunei,  the honor of Cardinal  Hat.”

Noting the consistory in November will see him the first Cardinal from Brunei,” he recognized: “It is a call to mission.”

On behalf of the FABC, Cardinal Bo said he warmly welcomes him to the College of Cardinals. “Our Holy Father, Pope Francis,” the Cardinal of Myanmar observed, “has been reinvigorating the church with his focus on the margins, calling for shepherds from countries in Asia to be in his college of Cardinals.”

The President of the Asian Bishops expressed his joy that Bishop Sim has accepted this challenge to service.

“We,  as fellow sojourners,  welcome our dear Bishop  to this commitment,” he expressed, praying: “May God who blesses every good effort, bless you abundantly and fortify you to the new call to mission.”

Here are Cardinal Bo’s letters:

***

Letter of Congratulations to the new Cardinal Designate : Bishop Cornelius Sim

Dear Brothers and Sisters of Church in Asia,

Peace and Joy of Christ.

Our cup of joy overflows today. Our Holy Father Pope has bestowed on  our dear  brother Bishop Cornelius Sim, apostolic vicar of Brunei,  the honor of Cardinal  Hat. The consistory in November will see him the first Cardinal from Brunei.

It is a call to mission.

On behalf of the FABC, I warmly welcome him to the College of Cardinals.   Our Holy Father, Pope Francis has been reinvigorating the church with his focus on the margins, calling for shepherds from countries in Asia to be in his college of  Cardinals.

Pope Francis has made known in every Papal consistory, the clarion call to service of every Cardinal.    This elevation to the role of Cardinal is a call to service to the margins, a call to follow Jesus in his assertion: service is power.

The Pope has called us all to wage war against the two great injustices in the world: Economic injustice and environmental injustice.   The Covid, the Pope had indicated, exposed the infection of the world with injustice.   His call is to participate in a more just post Covid world.

I am glad that Bishop  has accepted this challenge  to service.    We,  as fellow sojourners,  welcome our dear Bishop  to this commitment.

May God who blesses every good effort, bless you abundantly and fortify you to the new call to mission,

Accompanying the Bishop in prayers,

Your Brother  in Mission,

Cardinal Charles Maung Bo., SDB

President, Federation of Asian Bishops Conferences (FABC)

****

CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR NEW CARDINAL

Archbishop Jose F. Advincula of Capiz in the Philippines

Dear Brothers and Sisters of Church in Asia,

Peace and Joy of Christ.

We are immensely blessed to hear the good news that Pope Francis has announced the good news of  our esteemed Archbishop Jose F. Advincula of Capiz in the Philippines as the  Cardinal-designate.  This is a great honor to the whole of Philippines and Asia.

This call to service is a familiar territory  to our dear Archbishop, shepherding the huge diocese of Capiz.   He was ordained a priest of the Archdiocese of Capiz on April 14, 1976. He held challenging responsibilities throughout his priestly life.  Pope John Paul II appointed him Bishop of San Carlos on July 25, 2001 and he received his episcopal consecration on September 8, 2001.  On November 9, 2011, Pope Benedict XVI named him Archbishop of Capiz.   Within the Philippine Bishops Conference he has been a member of the Commission for the Doctrine of the Faith and Commission for Indigenous Peoples.

An erudite scholar and a faithful son of the Catholic Church, the Archbishop brings to his mission a pastoral passion and commitment, much lauded by his people.  Pope Francis has chosen an enlightened  shepherd to intensify the Gospel of Justice to his people  and collaborate in the new mission of creating a  world of equity in the post Covid era.    The archbishop is blessed with both the spiritual resolve and intellectual acumen to  face the challenges thrown by the Holy Father.

As fellow sojourners in this faith journey, we warmly welcome His Grace to the College of Cardinals, pledging our prayers and friendship in the sacred pilgrimage of service of Faith and promotion of Justice.

Your Brother in Christ’s Mission,

Cardinal Charles Maung Bo., SDB

President of  Federation of Asian Bishops Conferences  (FABC)

[Text of Letters was given by Cardinal Bo to ZENIT’s Deborah Lubov ]

 

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