EXTREMIST groups in India see the growth of the Catholic Church as a ‚Äúthreat‚ÄĚ and have successfully lobbied the government against Christians‚Äô rights.
This was the warning of newly elevated cardinal of the Syro-Malabar Church George Alencherry in an interview with ucanews.com in Rome.
Alencherry was among the 22 new cardinals created Saturday by Pope Benedict XVI in St. Peter‚Äôs Basilica. Most of the new princes of the Church come from the Curia and from Europe. Only two ‚Äď Alencherry and the bishop of Hong Kong John Tong Hon ‚Äď come from Asia.
In his homily, the pope warned the new cardinals that their duty is ‚Äúserving God and others‚ÄĚ and urged them to be ‚Äúself-giving,‚ÄĚ rejecting the ‚Äúpower and glory that belong to this world.‚ÄĚ
After weeks of document leaks inside the Vatican and rumors of power struggles, plots and even a possible resignation by the pontiff, Pope Benedict also asked cardinals to pray for him, that he ‚Äúmay continually offer to the people of God the witness of sound doctrine and to guide holy Church with a firm and humble hand.‚ÄĚ
Speaking ahead of Saturday‚Äôs ceremony, Archbishop Alencherry said he looked at his entrance into the College of Cardinals ‚Äď which will eventually be called to elect Pope Benedict‚Äôs successor ‚Äď with a spirit of service.
‚ÄúI am really searching what I can do for the Church, especially at the universal level.‚ÄĚ
Report from ucanews.com