Pakistan’s New Cardinal Returns Home to Warm Welcome

ICC Note: Pakistan’s newly appointed cardinal, Cardinal Joseph Coutts, returned to the country on Tuesday, July 10, to a warm welcome. Coutts, the second Pakistani cardinal in history, was appointed to the post on June 29 at the Vatican. Many Pakistani Christians hope Cardinal Coutts will be able to use his newly elevated position to highlight the suffering of Pakistani Christians.

07/15/2018 Pakistan (Daily Times) – Cardinal Joseph Coutts, Pakistan’s second cardinal on Tuesday returned to the country.

Cardinal Coutts was appointed Cardinal at a meeting of the Church’s top council at the Vatican on June 29. He was warmly received at the Karachi airport as dozen belonging to the Christian community had gathered at the airport anticipating his arrival.

A ceremony has been organized at the Saint Patrick’s Church in Saddar in honour of the cardinal. Cardinal Coutts was among 14 new cardinals Pope Francis had named in May this year to be appointed to the post.

The 73-year-old is the second Pakistani to be honoured with the position after the death of Cardinal Joseph Cordeiro in 1994.

In an interview with Vatican News, Cardinal Coutts said he was surprised at his nomination.

“For us, in a poor country like Pakistan and in a small, young Church, historically, where we all, as bishops or archbishops, spend a lot of time with the people. And thank God we don’t have that lifestyle which takes us above the people. We try to be with the people most of the time.”

Cardinal Coutts said that he’s uncertain about the requirements of his new job and whether he will be able to spend the same amount of time with people as he used to. “So to be a cardinal, I don’t yet know what the implications are. But I fear there will be a gap. I won’t be able to give so much time to the people,” he said.

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