MANILA - The Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) is elated over the scheduled elevation of Cotabato Archbishop Orlando Quevedo as a member of the College of Cardinals.
CBCP President and Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas said the soon-to-be Cardinal Quevedo lives a "very simple lifestyle" and has "warm fraternal manners."
He said Quevedo will be able to assist Pope Francis in reaching out to the marginalized in Mindanao.
"A Cardinal from Mindanao is a papal tribute to the strength of the Catholic faith in that region of our country. It is a proof that the Catholic faith in Mindanao is now bearing rich fruits; Cardinal Quevedo is its living testimony," he said.
He also noted Quevedo is "truly passionate for the formation of basic ecclesial communities. He has been a pastor up north in Ilocos Sur and down south in Cotabato."
He also described Quevedo as an "intellectual giant."
"[Quevedo] is known in the CBCP for his mental clarity and intellectual brilliance," Villegas said.
According to the Vatican Radio, the official broadcasting service of the Vatican, Cotabato's Quevedo is one of the 16 bishops who will be named cardinal in February.
All 16 bishops will be "cardinal electors," which means they can take part in the election of the next pope.
Also among those who will be named "cardinal electors" are bishops from Italy, Germany, Britain, Nicaragua, Canada, Ivory Coast, Brazil, Argentina, South Korea, Chile, Burkina Faso, and Haiti.
The ceremony to elevate the new cardinals, known as a consistory, will be held on Feb. 22.