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Cardinal Quevedo turns 80, loses right to enter into conclave

Cardinal Quevedo turns 80, loses right to enter into conclave

Cardinal Orlando Quevedo has turned 80 years old yesterday, reducing the number of cardinal electors to 122. MARIA TAN

By Roy Lagarde

March 12, 2019

Manila, Philippines

Cardinal Orlando Quevedo, the retired archbishop of Cotabato, has turned 80 on Monday, losing his right to participate in a papal election.

The cardinal marked his birthday by celebrating Mass with bishops, as greetings poured in from around the world.

The celebration attracted friends from across the archdiocese and around the country.

“All I am and that I possess, all of them come from God,” he told mass goers and well-wishers at the Cotabato cathedral.

Cardinal Quevedo is the first and remains to be the only Filipino cardinal named by Pope Francis so far.

Voting for popes is barred to cardinals over 79, leaving the Philippines with lone representative — Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle of Manila, who is just 61.

Cardinal Tagle participated in the conclave that elected Pope Francis in 2013.

Quevedo was the eight Filipino to be appointed a cardinal in 2014 and the first from Mindanao.

The country only has three living cardinals today, including retired Cardinal Gaudencio Rosales, who is now 86 years old.

There are now 223 living cardinals, of whom 122 are under the age of 80 and therefore eligible to participate in a conclave to elect a new pope.

Cardinal Quevedo was Pope Francis’ special envoy to the 150th anniversary celebration of the “Hidden Christians of Japan” that was held in Nagasaki in March 2015.

Unknown to many, the pope also sent him to beatify 17 martyrs of Laos in December 2016.