Pope Francis has named Archbishop Vincent Nichols of Westminster a cardinal.
The Pontiff made the announcement during his Angelus address in St Peter’s Square this morning.
In a statement Archbishop Nichols said: “Today, I am deeply moved by the honour conferred upon the Catholic Church in England and Wales and on the Diocese of Westminster in my appointment as Cardinal by His Holiness Pope Francis.
“The Catholic Church in our countries has always had a profound and loving loyalty to the Holy Father, the Successor of St Peter. This appointment enables me, on behalf of all, to serve the Pope in a direct and prolonged way.
“Personally, this is a humbling moment when I am asked to take a place in this service of the Holy See and in the line of much loved Cardinal Archbishops of Westminster. I seek the blessing of Almighty God for these new responsibilities and I ask for the prayers of all people of faith that I may fulfil them with energy and devotion.”
The Pope named 15 other voting cardinals:
- Archbishop Pietro Parolin, Vatican Secretary of State;
- Archbishop Lorenzo Baldisseri, secretary of the synod of bishops;
- Archbishop Gerhard Ludwig Műller, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith;
- Archbishop Beniamino Stella, Prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy;
- Archbishop Leopoldo José Brenes Solórzano of Managua, Nicaragua;
- Archbishop Gérald Cyprien Lacroix of Québec;
- Archbishop Jean-Pierre Kutwa of Abidjan, Ivory Coast;
- Archbishop Orani João Tempesta of Rio de Janeiro;
- Archbishop Gualtiero Bassetti of Perugia-Città della Pieve;
- Archbishop Mario Aurelio Poli of Buenos Aires;
- Archbishop Andrew Yeom Soo jung of Seoul;
- Archbishop Ricardo Ezzati Andrello of Santiago de Chile;
- Archbishop Philippe Nakellentuba Ouédraogo of Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso;
- Archbishop Orlando Quevedo of Cotabato, Philippines;
- Bishop Chibly Langlois of Les Cayes, Haiti.
He also appointed three non-voting cardinals who are over 80: Archbishop Loris Francesco Capovilla, former secretary to John XXIII, Emeritus Archbishop Fernando Sebastián Aguilar of Pamplona and Archbishop Kelvin Edward Felix of Castries, Saint Lucia.
Archbishop Nichols, who was appointed Archbishop of Westminster by Benedict XVI in April 2009, will receive the red hat at the next consistory of cardinals on February 22, the Feast of the Chair of St Peter.
Blessed John Paul II appointed Archbishop Nichols Auxiliary Bishop of Westminster in November 1991. He was named Archbishop of Birmingham in February 2000.