Who are the new Asian cardinals?
By Matters India Reporter New Delhi: Pope Francis on May 20 named 14 new cardinals, including three from Asia. They are Archbishops Joseph Coutts of Karachi, Pakistan and Thomas Aquinas Manyo of Osaka, Japan, and Chaldean Catholic Patriarch of Babylon, Louis Raphaël I Sako. Archbishop Coutts is the president of Pakistan Catholic Bishops Conference. A doctor of philosophy, he can speak several languages including English, Italian, German, French, Urdu, Punjabi and Sindhi. The cardinal-elect is the chairperson of Caritas Pakistan and a noted inter-religious activist. His involvement in inter-faith dialogue with Muslims earned him the 2007 Shalom Prize form the Catholic University of Eichstätt-Ingolstadt in Germany. The award given to people and projects working for human rights recognized the Pakistani prelate’s commitment to interfaith dialogue in his Islamic nation. Archbishop Coutts was born on July 21, 1945, at Amritsar, British India. He received his priestly training at the Christ the King seminary in Karachi and was ordained a priest on January 9, 1971, in Lahore. After ordination, he went for higher studies in Rome and became professor of philosophy at his alma mater, Christ the King Regional Seminary. He was appointed rector of St. Mary’s Minor Seminary, Lahore and later diocesan vicar general. He was appointed Coadjutor Bishop of Hyderabad, Pakistan, on May 5, 1988. Pope John Paul II appointed him then Bishop of Faisalabad diocese, where he was installed on September 25, 1998. He succeeded Bishop John Joseph who took his own life as a protest against anti-Christian bias in Pakistan. On January 25, 2012, Pope Benedict XVI elevated him as the Archbishop of Karachi. He was installed in Karachi on March 17 the same year. He succeeded Archbishop Evarist Pinto. The new cardinal from Japan, Archbishop Thomas Aquinas Manyo Maeda was born on March 3, 1949, in Kami-Goto, Nagasaki Prefecture. He was ordained a priest on March 19, 1975. On May 13, 2011, Pope Benedict XVI appointed him Bishop of Hiroshima. He was ordained Bishop on September 23, 2011. Pope Francis on August 20, 2014, appointed Bishop Maeda as the Archbishop of Osaka following the retirement of Jesuit Archbishop Leo Jun Ikenaga. Patriarch Sako was born on July 4, 1948, in Zakho city on the Iraq–Turkey border. He was chosen the Chaldean Catholic Patriarch of Babylon and head of the Chaldean Catholic Church on February 1, 2013. On the same day, Pope Benedict XVI granted him ecclesiastical communion, which the leaders of the Eastern-rite Catholic Churches seek as a sign of their unity with the wider Catholic Church. Sako was ordained a priest on June 1, 1974, for the Chaldean Archeparchy of Mosul. After his election and subsequent confirmation in 2003 he was consecrated the Chaldean Catholic Archeparch of Kirkuk on September 27, 2003. Before he was consecrated bishop, Sako had demanded to see the President Saddam Hussein after the Iraqi government refused him permission to teach religious education. Saddam too refused his request. Sako then did a separate doctorate that had little religious content. The government them gave him his teaching license. The Synod of Bishops of the Chaldean Catholic Church, convoked in Rome on January 28, 2013, electing him Patriarch of Babylon. He succeeded Emmanuel III Delly who had resigned because of old age. Sako chose Louis Raphael I as his name. In July 2014 Sako led a wave of condemnation for the Sunni Islamists who gave Christians three options: convert, submit to their radical rule and pay a religious levy or face death by the sword. Hundreds of Christian families left Mosul ahead of the ultimatum, many lost their possessions as they fled for safety. In September 2014, Sako held the US indirectly responsible for what happened in Iraq. He also criticized Muslim countries for lack of support.