Priests across the State reacted with jubilation over the appointment of Archbishop Filipe Neri Ferrão as Cardinal by Pope Francis on Sunday.
Fr J Loiola Pereira, Secretary to the Archbishop, said it is certainly a matter of great joy for the whole Archdiocese of Goa and Daman that its Archbishop has been appointed a Cardinal by the Holy Father.
“This appointment surely brings honour to the person of our Archbishop, but also places on his shoulders a special responsibility at the service of the Universal Church. Let us all pray that the Holy Spirit may help him and guide him in this new mission.”
“We know that Archbishop Filipe Neri is also the Patriarch of the East Indies. Till today, we were used to hearing about the Cardinal-Patriarch of Lisbon in Portugal and the Cardinal-Patriarch of Venice in Italy. From now on, we shall have to get used to saying Cardinal-Patriarch of Goa!”
Caritas-Goa Director Fr Maverick Fernandes said the elevation of Archbishop Felipe Neri Ferrão as Cardinal of the Catholic Church is a moment of grace and gratitude to God.
“Any responsibility in the Church is for service to God and His people. The qualities of heart and mind that he holds, as I have experienced, will assist him in the new challenges that go with the responsibility of being a Cardinal. My prayers are for his good health. May God be with him,” said Fr Fernandes.
Added Fr Aleixo Menezes, Rector of Rachol Seminary: “It is a moment of great joy for the Church in Goa that Pope Francis has decided to make His Grace, Archbishop Filipe Neri Ferrão a Cardinal.”
“As Archbishop of Goa, he is the Patriarch of the East Indies and the Primate of the East. I feel that this title is bestowed on our Archbishop because he is Pastoral Oriented Archbishop whose main concern is the integral good of the people. Simple, humble yet a good pastor and leader. Now we have an Archbishop-Patriarch-Cardinal.”
“It is also a matter of great joy to the Archdiocese of Goa and Daman. Being the first Diocese in the East, it was called the Rome of the East. And Archbishop Ferrão has tried to make the Church in Goa updated and relevant to the times,” Fr Menezes added.
Fr Barry Cardozo, Director of Diocesan Centre for Social Communications Media (DCSCM), said it is a great joy and honour to have Goa’s very own Archbishop as Cardinal.
“It’s a moment of pride for all the people of Goa and also a humble opportunity of service to the Universal Church. As we thank God for this great honour we pray that God may guide and help him in the new responsibility that he has received at the service of the Universal Church, as a close collaborator of Pope Francis.
Fr Nelson Sequeira, Prefect of Theology Studies at Rachol Seminary, said it is a great joy that Rome has recognised the contribution of Archbishop-Patriarch Filipe Neri Ferrão.
“Right from the time he took charge of the Archdiocese there were rumours that he would be made Cardinal. Archbishop Filipe Neri has made quite an impression by his speech during the Synod on the New Evangelisation.”
“His interventions during the meetings of Bishops have been impressive. In the Archdiocese, he has focussed on the spiritual awakening and took keen interest in the affairs of the laity and Religious.”
“He merits this title for his wisdom and ministry. It is an honour not only for Archdiocese of Goa and Daman but for the Church in India,” added Fr Sequeira.