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Confirmed: Pope to appoint new cardinals at February consistory

Catholic World News - October 31, 2013

Pope Francis will appoint new cardinals at a consistory in February 2014, the Vatican has announced.

Confirming reports that had circulated a day earlier, the Vatican press office revealed that the consistory will be held on February 22: the feast of the Chair of St. Peter. The Vatican did not announce the names of the prelates who will be named cardinals.

Pope Francis wanted to give early public notice of his plans for the February consistory in order to “facilitate the planning of other meetings involving the participation of cardinals from different parts of the world,” the Vatican statement said.

In fact, the Pope himself has scheduled several meetings for cardinals during February. The Council of Cardinals—the group of 8 prelates advising the Pontiff on Church reforms—will hold its 3rd meeting just before the consistory, on February 17 and 18. The council of the Synod of Bishops will meet later in the month, on February 24 and 25. And the committee of cardinals appointed to supervise Vatican financial affairs is also expected to meet in February; the dates for that meeting have not yet been set.

Finally, the Vatican confirmed that Pope Francis, following the example set by his predecessors, plans to bring all members of the College of Cardinals together in Rome on the days before the consistory. At that meeting, the cardinals are expected to hear a briefing on the Pope’s plans for reform of the Roman Curia, and offer their suggestions.

Father Federico Lombardi, the director of the Vatican press office, disclosed that the Pope had already mentioned his plans for the February consistory when he met in October with his Council of Cardinals, and a few days later when he met with the council of the Synod of Bishops.

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