The Catholic bishop of Ekwulobia, Anambra province, Peter Okpaleke, has been named one of the 21 new cardinals of the Catholic Church by Pope Francis.
The announcement was made on Sunday, May 29, at the conclusion of Regina Coeli, a prayer offered by Catholics. In the list of new cardinals, eight are from Europe, six from Asia, two from Africa, one from North America, and four from Central and Latin America.
The college of cardinals is the body of high priests who support the pope in overseeing the affairs of the church, and they vote during the papal election.
Pope Francis has said he will hold a consistory (meeting of the cardinal council) for the new cardinals on August 27, and will meet with the new cardinals that day to discuss church matters.
The Pope is quoted as saying;
“On Saturday, the 27th of August, I will be holding a panel for the construction of new cardinals. Pray that they will assist me in my mission as bishop of Rome to benefit all of God’s people. ”