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Cardinal named to Vatican liturgical congregation.

Cardinal Robert Sarah (age 69) is a priest from Guinea. He was appointed Prefect for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments by Pope Francis on 23 November 2014. This dicastary includes the regulation of the Church's liturgy, the administration of the sacraments and overseeing the translation of the Church's liturgical texts. Previously, he was president of the Pontifical Council's Cor Unum which undertakes humanitarian relief and charitable causes on behalf of the Vatican and the pope.

Cardinal Sarah is a courageous prelate who is unafraid of speaking out in defense of the Catholic Church and its teachings. In September 2010, following a remark by Colonel Gaddafi for Islam to become the religion of Europe, Cardinal Sarah remarked: "To speak of the European continent converting to Islam makes no sense because it is the people alone who decide consciously to be Christian, Muslim, or to follow other religions."

Rorate Caeli calls Cardinal Sarah "one of the strongest conservative voices at the Extraordinary Synod of Bishops this year (2014)." The Guinean prelate was critical of the November Synod on the Family, saying that the Church was being pressured by media groups to change certain pastoral teachings, particularly regarding same-sex unions.

As head of the liturgical congregation, it is expected that Cardinal Sarah will take a strong role in defending the Sacrament of the Eucharist against those in the Church hierarchy (particularly the German bishops) who are lobbying for a relaxation of the rules to allow those divorced and remarried outside the Church to receive Holy Eucharist.

Until his appointment in November, the most senior African at the Vatican had been Cardinal Peter Turkson, a Ghanaian who is president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace.

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Title Annotation:VATICAN; Robert Sarah of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments
Publication:Catholic Insight
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:4EXVA
Date:Feb 1, 2015
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