Pope Benedict names 24 new cardinals

Thursday, 21 October 2010 05:48 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Colombo’s Archbishop Malcolm Ranjith elevated

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - Pope Benedict named 24 new Roman Catholic cardinals on Wednesday, including 20 who are young enough to join the 120-member conclave that will secretly elect his successor when he dies.

This includes Colombo’s Roman Catholic Archbishop Malcolm Ranjith who was elevated to that office on 16 June 2009.  With his new appointment Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith becomes the 2nd cardinal to be named from Sri Lanka, the 1st being Cardinal Thomas Cooray who too held office as Archbishop of Colombo from 1947 before his elevation as cardinal in 1965.

Cardinals, the “princes of the Church”, are a pope’s closest advisers and personally named by him. They are usually archbishops of diocese or heads of influential departments at the Vatican.

“Cardinal electors”, who can join the body that selects a new Pope, must be younger than 80 years old.

The cardinals will be installed in a ceremony known as a consistory on 20 November.