During the installation of the new cardinals the Pope told them to be ready to give their lives for the Church.[Not Christ!]
The total number of Cardinals is now 184.
The Pope said, ‘Be ready to spill your own blood if need be to spread the faith.
Every Christian knows he is called to a faithfulness without compromise which can require even the extreme sacrifice.’
Noting that the new princes [!] come from 27 countries and five continents, John Paul asked, ‘Is this not also a sign of the ability in every corner of the planet to understand people with different traditions and languages?’
So cardinals are princes. If they are princes of the Vatican then their allegiance has to be in that direction and not to the place in which they reside.
Behind this unchanging ritualism of the Church of Rome, is the supposed changing face of the Catholic Church at the start of the third millennium which has more focus in the developing world where the faith in it is expanding and less in the European states. However, as Jesus likened the tree and its fruit, so to the Roman Catholic Church cannot bare good fruit. Its forays are mere facades and its ambassadors are known to wear masks, so that the Church may appear to be everything to all people.
The Roman Catholic Church certainly has internationalised its hierarchy especially in the Latin Americas, which has about 40% of the world’s one billion Catholics.
Just as the term, ‘Christian’ is abused, one wonders just what those in Latin America perceive as Christianity or Catholicism. Are they Catholic in that they hold to all the tenets of the Church of Rome, or is their faith in Jesus Christ supremely. On the other hand is it not more likely that the pagan gods they worshipped before are the same as they are worshipping now but with Catholic titles?