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Cardinal-elect Tobin named to head Newark archdiocese

November 07, 2016

Pope Francis has named Archbishop Joseph Tobin on Indianapolis—who will be elevated to the College of Cardinals later this month—to become Archbishop of Newark, New Jersey.

The appointment is an unmistakable move by the Pontiff to stamp his own imprint on the Church in the US, putting one of the American prelates most closely identified with the Pope’s thinking in a high-profile see on the East Coast.

Located just outside New York City and just a 90-minute drive from Philadelphia—both cities that have traditionally been regarded as “cardinalatial sees”—the Newark archdiocese has never been led by a cardinal. (Cardinal Theodore McCarrick was Archbishop of Newark from 1986 to 2000, but received his red hat only after moving on to head the Archdiocese of Washington, DC.) Archbishop Tobin replaces Archbishop John Myers, who is retiring at the age of 75 after a tenure in Newark marred by controversy over his failure to enforce sex-abuse guidelines.

In Newark, Cardinal-elect Tobin will be just minutes away from New York, and his voice on public issues will rival that of New York’s Cardinal Timothy Dolan, who is generally regarded as a more conservative prelate. As a cardinal, he will outrank Archbishop Charles Chaput of nearby Philadelphia, one of the strongest defenders of traditional morality in the American hiearchy.

 
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