Bangalore (AsiaNews/Matters India) – “The future of the Church is in Asia”, said Pope Francis when he received Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle. The Filipino cardinal spoke about it at the last session of a conference organized by the Pontifical Athenaeum for Philosophy, Theology and Canon Law in Bangalore, southern India.
The 58-year-old prelate was recently appointed head of Caritas Internationalis and of the Catholic Biblical Federation. He said he had asked to meet the pope to be relieved of those tasks, but Francis refused, saying that he wanted an Asian in those positions exactly because “The future of the Church is in Asia”.
For the cardinal, “It is not a matter of honour. Is it a challenge, a prophecy or a great calling? We do not know. But it is surely a matter of great responsibility, a great mission”.
We Asian Churches will take “our mission seriously and seek ways on how we can contribute to the worldwide Church, in terms of reflection, research and best practices.”
The prelate noted that the Church is moving into regions such as Africa, Asia and Oceania.
As he discussed the ‘Church and leadership in cross-cultural and inter-faith Asian context,’ the prelate noted that “Places of deep suffering and pain have become the centre of gravity of Church life and reflection.”