January 4, 2012. (Romereports.com)
It's very likely that on the 18th or 19th of February, Benedict XVI will appoint 15 new cardinals. Currently there are 192 of them, but in case of a conclave, only 107 would have voting power since they're younger than 80 years of age.
The names of the future cardinals are not know just yet, but some predict they will include Fernando Filoni, who serves as the Prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, also Domenico Calcagno, presdient of APSA, also know as the Administration of the Patrimony of the Holy See. There's also Giuseppe Versaldi, who currently serves as the president of the Vatican's Prefecture for Economic Affairs. Other candidates include Giuseppe Bertello, the president of the Vatican's Governorate. The list could also include Francesco Coccopalmerio, president of the Pontifical Council for the Interpretation of Legislative Texts. Then, there's also Rino Fisichella, who serves as the president of the Pontifical Council for the New Evangelization.
Other possibilities include, Brazilian Joao Braz de Aviz. He's the prefect of the Congregation for Religious. There's also Edwin O'Brien, An American who was recently appointed grand master of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre. Spaniard archpriest of Rome's Basilica of St. Mary Major, Santos Abril y Castello could also be appointed.
Other probable candidates include Archbishop of New York Timothy Dolan and Archbishop Dominik Duka of Prague. There's also Berlin's Archbishop Rainer Maria Woelki and from Toronto, Thomas C. Collins. From Utrecth, Willem Eijk and Hong Kon's bishop John Tong.
The Patriarch of Lebanon, Bechara Rai and the new Major Archbishop of the Syro-Malabar Church George Alencherry.
On January 18th, the pope is expected to officially announce the new cardinals.