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Hyderabad archbishop Anthony appointed cardinal; first Dalit to don the mantle | India News

HYDERABAD: Archbishop of Hyderabad Diocese Dr Poola Anthony officially became the first Dalit to be appointed a cardinal on Saturday evening. Pope Francis placed the red biretta on Anthony’s head as well as the ring on his hand at St Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City at 7.30pm IST. The Pope then embraced Anthony and had a brief conversation with him before he bowed out.
The Vatican had four cardinals of Indian origin. The elevation of Anthony and Filipe Neri Ferrao from Goa takes the total to six.
Anthony (60) was ordained as a priest in 1992 and was appointed bishop of Kurnool in 2008. In 2020, he was named archbishop of Hyderabad and was elected a cardinal by Pope Francis in May 2022. With Anthony’s elevation, he would be among the 20 new cardinals who would eventually elect Pope Francis’s successor. In the event of his retirement, a conclave of all cardinals below the age of 80 would elect a new Pope.
Speaking to reporters before his elevation in Rome, Anthony quoted Pope Francis’s words: “How I wish for a poor church for the poor.”
“I think the Dalit community should rise. They should rise out misfortune,” he said.

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