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Pope Francis to raise Pakistani churchman to the rank of cardinal

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The Pontiff has announced that he would elevate 14 churchmen to the rank of cardinal. Pope Francis during his weekly Sunday address, on May 20 said that the new cardinals will come from Pakistan, Japan, Madagascar Portugal, Poland, Iraq, Italy, Spain, Peru, Mexico and Bolivia. Among these is Pakistani churchman Archbishop of Karachi Joseph Coutts.

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Pope Francis’ announcement came as a surprise, when he announced that he had picked 14 churchmen from five continents. These churchmen will be given their red hats during consistory- a special ceremony scheduled on June 29. These new appointments will make the total number of cardinals to 125 who will be electing Pope Francis’s successor.

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The new elector cardinals includes: Joseph Coutts Archbishop of Karachi,72, Louis Raphaël I Sako, 69, Chaldean Catholic patriarch of Babylon; Angelo De Donatis, 64, vicar general of Rome; Joseph Coutts, 72, archbishop of Karachi; António dos Santos Marto, 71, bishop of Leiria-Fatima; Pedro Barreto, 74, archbishop of Huancayo, Peru; Desiré Tsarahazana, 63, archbishop of Toamasina, Madagascar; Giuseppe Petrocchi, 69, archbishop of L’Aquila; Thomas Aquinas Manyo, 69, archbishop of Osaka, Japan; Spanish bishop Luis Ladaria, 74; Konrad Krajewski, 54, from Poland; Italian archbishop Angelo Becciu, 69.

Archbishop of Karachi Joseph Coutts was born on 21 July 1945. On January 9, 1971 at the age of 25 years, he was ordained as a Priest in Lahore. Later on May 5, 1988 at the age of 42, he was appointed as Coadjutor Bishop of Hyderabad in Pakistan. On September 16, same year he was ordained as a Bishop. On September 1, 1990, at the age of 45, he succeeded the Bishop of Hyderabad.

At the age of 52, on 27 June 1998, he was appointed as Bishop of Faisalabad. On January 25, 2012 at the age of 66 he was appointed a she Archbishop of Karachi. Recently he has been picked by the Pontiff to be elevated to the rank of cardinal, officially on June 29 in an upcoming ceremony. Joseph Coutts has been a priest since 47 years. He has been a bishop since 29 years.