Who is Wilton Gregory? Pope Francis appoints America’s first black cardinal

4 weeks ago 6

WILTON Gregory is set to become America's first black cardinal on November 28.

Pope Francis made the announcement at the Vatican on October 25, elevating 13 clergymen to cardinal status.

Wilton Gregory will become America's first black cardinal next month

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Wilton Gregory will become America's first black cardinal next monthCredit: AP:Associated Press

Who is Wilton Gregory?

Wilton Gregory is the only black Archbishop in the United States.

Since 2005, he had led the Archdiocese of Atlanta, before being appointed Archbishop of Washington, DC in 2019.

Gregory is a left-leaning cardinal who supports gay rights

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Gregory is a left-leaning cardinal who supports gay rightsCredit: EPA

Gregory is known for guiding the Catholic church through its clergy sexual abuse crisis in the early 2000s.

He is also an advocate for LGBTQ Catholics.

When will he become a cardinal to the Pope?

Speaking following his Angelus prayer from St. Peter's Square in Vatican City on October 25, Pope Francis appointed Gregory as America's first black cardinal.

Pope Francis made the announcement on October 25

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Pope Francis made the announcement on October 25Credit: Getty Images - Getty

Archbishop Gregory is one of 13 to be elevated to the rank at a surprise consistory or ceremony.

Francis said the churchmen would be elevated to a cardinal’s rank on November 28.

Francis asked for prayers so the new cardinals “may help me in my ministry as bishop of Rome for the good of all God’s faithful holy people.”

Gregory is the only American to have been appointed cardinal in Francis' new announcement

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Gregory is the only American to have been appointed cardinal in Francis' new announcementCredit: AP:Associated Press

Gregory said in a statement that becoming a cardinal would allow him to work more closely with the pontiff in caring for the Catholic Church.

Francis DeBernardo told The Associated Press that choosing Gregory for a cardinal’s post signals Francis wants “LGBTQ people to be part of the church, and he wants church people to respect them.”

Who are Pope Francis's cardinals?

Francis has appointed 13 new cardinals in total

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Francis has appointed 13 new cardinals in totalCredit: AP:Associated Press

Other new cardinals include:

An Italian who is the long-time papal preacher at the Vatican, the Rev. Raniero Cantalamessa, who is a Franciscan friar; The Kigali, Rwanda, Archbishop Antoine Kambanda The Capiz, Philippines, Archbishop Jose Fuerte Advincula The Santiago, Chile, Archbishop Celestino Aos Braco.

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Nine of the new cardinals are younger than 80-years-old.

No details have been provided by the Vatican about how the ceremony will happen in light of coronavirus precautions and travel restrictions.

Gregory is the only American to have been appointed the honor.

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