Indianapolis Archbishop Tobin discusses elevation to U.S. cardinal by Pope Francis


Indianapolis Archbishop Joseph Tobin

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INDIANAPOLIS — Indianapolis Archbishop Joseph Tobin held a news conference at the Catholic Center on Monday morning to discuss his new appointment to the College of Cardinals.

Tobin was one of the 17 new cardinals Pope Francis named yesterday, and he said he found out about the appointment to the College of Cardinals after receiving several tweets about.

He said he first tried calling his sisters to tell them the big news, but none of them answered their phones. "Later they called me back and said, 'Why didn't you tell us?' and I told them to check their voice mails," Tobin said.

Tobin says he isn't sure how much his role will change now that he's a cardinal, but he hopes to stay in Indianapolis. "I heard about Hoosier Hospitality, but I thought it was some slogan that Visit Indy thought up. But it’s a reality," Tobin said.

A cardinal is one of the highest ranking positions in the Catholic Church, and one of the group’s most well-known responsibilities is naming the new pope when that times comes.

The elevation of Tobin is significant both for the U.S. church and the U.S. election and reflects Francis' concern for refugees. Tobin openly opposed the position of Indiana Gov. Michael Pence, now the Republican running mate of presidential candidate Donald Trump, against the settling of Syrian refugees in the state.

Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett says he is pleased the city's Roman Catholic archbishop has been elevated to cardinal.

In his statement, Hogsett said Indianapolis has been blessed by Tobin's spiritual and civic leadership. He added he looks forward to working with Tobin and the Catholic Church to end poverty and inequality in the city.

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