• February 4, 2023

Pope Francis Accepts Resignation Of Conservative African Cardinal : NPR

Cardinal Robert Sarah attends a mass in St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican on March 12, 2013. The Holy See Press Office announced that Sarah has resigned from his leadership position. Gabriel Bouys / AFP via Getty Images Hide caption

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Gabriel Bouys / AFP via Getty Images

Cardinal Robert Sarah attends a mass in St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican on March 12, 2013. The Holy See Press Office announced that Sarah has resigned from his leadership position.

Gabriel Bouys / AFP via Getty Images

Pope Francis accepted the resignation of Cardinal Robert Sarah of Guinea as head of the Vatican’s Liturgy Department and removed a Conservative who was seen as an opponent of the Pope’s vision for the Church.

In a statement released on Saturday, the Holy See Press Office announced that Sarah has resigned from his leadership position. The Vatican gave no reason for his resignation or named a successor.

Sarah submitted his resignation as required by church law last June when he turned 75. According to the cardinals, cardinals are often allowed to remain in their posts for a few more years The Wall Street Journal.

Shortly after the announcement, Sarah posted a statement on Twitter hinting at his retirement age. “I am in God’s hands. The only stone is Christ. We will meet again very soon in Rome and elsewhere,” he wrote in French.

Today the Pope accepted my resignation as Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship after my seventy-fifth birthday. I am in God’s hands. The only stone is Christ. We will meet very soon in Rome and elsewhere. + RS pic.twitter.com/4sTLa4JjWB

– Cardinal R. Sarah (@Card_R_Sarah) February 20, 2021

Pope Francis accepted the cardinal’s resignation, ousting a proponent of the more traditional Catholic liturgy. Sarah is considered a steadfastly conservativeand was seen as a possible future Pope.

In 2014 Pope Francis appointed Sarah Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments. However, as the Journal notes, it became clear that the African cardinal and the Pope had very different visions on theological issues, including issues such as homosexuality and the Church’s relationship with the Muslim world.

Last year the cardinal Caused controversy after co-writing a book defending the “necessity” of celibacy in the priesthood. His co-author, the retired Pope Benedict XVI, later distanced himself from the book and asked to have his name removed as a co-author.

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