With this move, Archbishop Gregory will become the first African American cardinal from the United States.
Pope Francis said Sunday that he will create 13 new cardinals, including Washington Archbishop Wilton Gregory, at a consistory on Nov. 28, the eve of the First Sunday of Advent.
The pope announced his intention to add to the College of Cardinals from a window overlooking St. Peter’s Square, after leading the Angelus Oct. 25.
Gregory, who was appointed Archbishop of Washington in 2019, will become the first African-American cardinal.
Other cardinals-designate include Maltese Bishop Mario Grech, who became secretary general of the Synod of Bishops in September 2020, and the Italian Bishop Marcello Semeraro, who was named prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints earlier this month.
Also receiving the red hat is the Italian Capuchin Fr. Raniero Cantalamessa, who has served as the Preacher to the Papal Household since 1980. Aged 86, he will not be eligible to vote in a future conclave.
Others appointed to the College of Cardinals include Archbishop Celestino Aós Braco of Santiago, Chile; Archbishop Antoine Kambanda of Kigali, Rwanda; Archbishop Jose Fuerte Advincula of Capiz, Philippines; and Bishop Cornelius Sim, Vicar Apostolic of Brunei.
Also elevated to the rank of cardinal are Archbishop Augusto Paolo Lojudice, former Rome auxiliary bishop and current Archbishop of Siena-Colle di Val d’Elsa-Montalcino, Italy; Emeritus Bishop Felipe Arizmendi Esquivel of San Cristóbal de Las Casas, Chiapas, Mexico; Archbishop Silvano Maria Tomasi, Permanent Observer Emeritus to United Nations Office and Specialized Agencies in Geneva; Fra Mauro Gambetti, Custos of the Sacred Convent of Assisi; and Enrico Feroci, parish priest of Santa Maria del Divino Amore at Castel di Leva, Rome.
More about the historic appointment of Wilton Gregory, from The Washington Post:
The move was widely anticipated, as Washington archbishops are typically named as cardinals after their appointments. But it is nonetheless symbolically significant in the U.S. Catholic Church, where Blacks have been underrepresented among the leadership.
Gregory was appointed as Washington’s archbishop last year, taking over for Cardinal Donald Wuerl, who had been accused of mishandling clerical abuse cases.
Gregory, 72, will be eligible to vote for the next pope until he reaches the cutoff age of 80. Francis announced the names of his new cardinals while speaking from a window overlooking St. Peter’s Square, where he delivers his Sunday Angelus. The Vatican said the ceremony to name the new cardinals would take place Nov. 28, though it is unclear if tightening coronavirus restrictions in Italy might interfere.
Gregory has long been among the foremost Catholic leaders in the United States, having lead the national conference of Catholic bishops in the early-2000s, when it was making its first attempt to draw up anti-abuse guidelines. Gregory had been the archbishop of Atlanta before coming to Washington.