Today, Archbishop Timothy Dolan was named a Cardinal by Pope Benedict XVI.
He is one of 22 bishops worldwide who will be elevated to the rank of cardinal on February 18, 2012 at the Vatican. One other American bishop, Edwin O'Brien, Grand Master of the Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem and the former archbishop of Baltimore, will also be made a Cardinal on this date.
In an address to his New York Catholic Center coworkers at the Church of St. John the Evangelist today, Dolan said that his appointment as Cardinal is a recognition of the strength of the New York Archdiocese and community, and less so a personal commendation to Dolan himself.
“It’s as if the pope is placing the red hat [of a cardinal] on the empire state building,” Dolan said. “He’s putting the red hat on the statue of liberty… on the home plate of Yankee Stadium … on the spires of St. Patrick’s Cathedral and on every great parish in this archdiocese. This his [Pope Benedict XVI] way of saying to the Archdiocese of New York and to this great community that we cherish very much: ‘Congratulations. I love you, I need you, you’re an inspiration to the world, keep up the good work.’”
As a member of the College of Cardinals, Archbishop Dolan will serve as one of Pope Benedict XVI’s advisors on church matters, when summoned. In the event of the pope’s death, it would be the Cardinals’ responsibility to elect his successor.
Dolan, 61, began his tenure as Archbishop of New York in April 2009 after serving as Archbishop of Milwaukee. In November 2010 was named president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB). In 1987, he was appointed to a five-year term as secretary to the Apostolic Nunciature in Washington, D.C. In 1994, he was appointed rector of the Pontifical North American College in Rome, where he served until June 2001.
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