VATICAN CITY (CNS) – Writing to the 20 new cardinals he will create in February, Pope Francis said they should graciously accept that their friends, family and faithful will want to celebrate, but they also should ensure that the celebrations are not exaggerated.
“As good Christians, they will celebrate because Christians rejoice and know how to celebrate,” the pope wrote. “Accept it with humility. Only do so in a way that in these celebrations there does not creep in a spirit of worldliness that intoxicates more than grappa on an empty stomach, disorienting and separating one from the cross of Christ.”
The letter, signed by the pope Jan. 4, the day he announced the names of the new cardinals, was published Jan. 23 in L’Osservatore Romano, the Vatican newspaper. Pope Francis had written a similar letter, also requesting restrained celebrations, when he created new cardinals in 2014.