February 21, 2013. (Romereports.com)
Out of the 117 cardinals who are eligible to vote in the coming
Conclave, 11 of them are from Africa.
Out of this group, the one who was
most recently made a cardinal is 69 year old Nigerian John Olorunfemi
the Archbishop of Abuja. He's known as a great African
theologian and in 2012 he was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.
This is what he said just hours after being made a Cardinal.
CARD. JOHN OLORUNFEMI ONAIYEKAN
Archbishop of Abuja (Nigeria)
“I am not even afraid, even though the challenges are high. You know why I am not afraid? Because I've learned in my many years, serving the Church that God will never send us anywhere if we are not accompanied with His grace. So I am good and happy and confident by God's grace.”
He was born in the city of Kabba in 1994. At the age of 25 he was ordained a priest. He studied Theology in Rome and in 1980 he joined the International Theological Commission as well as the Commission for Dialogue between Catholics and Methodists.
In 1983 John Paul II ordained him a bishop in St. Peter's Basilica. He was only 38 at the time, making him the youngest bishop in Nigeria. His work with inter-religious dialogue continued, when from from 1991 to 2006, he worked with the World Council of Churches.
Given the random and frequent attacks against Christian churches in Nigeria, the Cardinal has always defended dialogue and peace in his country. In the Vatican, he's a member of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and the Pontifical Council for the Family.
OFL @ odelafu /KLH