Another confrere created Cardinal
“In absentia” for the imposition of the red biretta and the cardinal’s ring, our confrere Richard Kuuia Baawobr was created a cardinal by Pope Francis during the consistory for the creation of new cardinals which took place in the basilica of St. Peter in Rome on Saturday 27 August 2022. The last Missionary of Africa to be created a cardinal was our confrere Michael Fitzgerald.
In his sermon during the ceremony, the Pope focused on the double image of fire: fire as the powerful flame of the Spirit and the fire of embers like the campfire lit by Jesus on the banks of Lake Galilee. For him and for all the Cardinals, the Pope insisted, this double fire of Jesus, bright fire and gentle fire, “reminds us that a man of apostolic zeal is moved by the fire of the Spirit to take courageous care of things, great and small”. In conclusion, the Bishop of Rome invited the universal Church to pray for the Bishop of Wa, who could not physically participate in this celebration due to hospitalisation following a heart problem.
In the same spirit of prayer, the Holy Mass of Thanksgiving scheduled for Sunday 28 August 2022 was celebrated in the large chapel of our Generalate and animated by the Ghanaian community of Rome. Peter Cardinal Turkson presided at this Eucharistic celebration in place of Cardinal Baawobr who was hospitalised at the Ospedale Santo Spirito in Rome.
Many people, bishops, confreres, friends, and even a delegation from the Ghanaian government, had come to participate in this event. Thus, our chapel vibrated to Ghanaian melodies and shone with the colours of this beautiful country formerly called Gold Coast.
Corroborating the message of the Pope’s sermon, Cardinal Turkson focused his homily on the theme of humility and service. Humility understood as a relational virtue with God, with all humanity and with all of God’s creation. It is in this humility that we are called to serve one another.
Our Superior General, Father Stan Lubungo, who had welcomed everyone to the Eucharistic celebration, reminded us at the end of the Mass of the importance of not insisting on visiting Cardinal Baawobr in hospital because what he needed most was rest and prayer. The coordination established by the Society for this purpose should be followed.
At the end of the Eucharistic celebration, the agape was shared in the beautiful garden of our house in a spirit of brotherhood.
May Christ who chose Cardinal Baawobr be favourable to our prayers and give him good health for the greater glory of God.
Serge Boroto, M.Afr.