Vatican: His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI created His Beatitude Moran Mor Baselios Cleemis Catholicos, the Major Archbishop of Trivandrum the new Cardinal of the Universal Church in the Consistory held on 24 November 2012. The new cardinal received his insignia from the Holy Father along with other five new Cardinals. Holy Father invested Baselios Cardinal Cleemis Catholicos the insignia of Mudithoppi, specially designed as per the tradition of the Syrian Rite and the Ring. The ceremony started at 11am (Indian Time3.30pm) and concluded after at 12 noon. His Beatitude Moran Mor Baselios Cardinal Cleemis is the first Cardinal of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church and youngest of the universal Church.
High dignitaries of both religious and political witnessed the investure ceremony at Vatican. The official delegation of the Government of India, headed by Sri. P.J. Kurian, Honorable Deputy Speaker of Rajyasabha was present to greet the new cardinal on behalf of the nation. The delegation of the central government includes Honorable Minister K.C. Venugopal, Mr. E.T. Muhammad Bashir M.P., Mr. Jose K. Mani M.P., and Adv. Johnson Abraham. Representing the Trivandrum Corporation and the State-Capital, Prof. J. Chandrika, worshipful Mayor of Trivandrum and Mr. Palode Ravi MLA attended the function. Leaders of Islam and Hiduism were present at Vatican to witness the ceremony. Imam Jamaludee Mankha (Palayam, Trivandrum), Swami Guru Ratna Gnana Thapasi (Santhigiri Ashram, Pothencode), Swami Sooshmanandh (Sivagiri Madh, Varkala) His Excellency Ayoob Mar Silvanos (Jacobite Church) His Excellency Joseph Mar Thomas (Mar Thoma Church), and Bishop Dharmaraj Rassalam (Church of South India) were present to represent various communities. His Eminence Cardinal Alencherry, the Major Archbishop of the Syro-Malabar Church and His Grace Soosai Pakiam, Archbishop of Trivandrum were present along with the bishops of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church at Vatican. Many faithful of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church from all over the world reached Vatican to watch this historical event.
On 25 November the new Cardinals will join the Holy Father to offer Holy Qurbono at St. Peter’s Basilica, Rome. At evening, the entire delegation from the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church will join the Holy Qurbono celebrated by the New Cardinal to thank the Almighty for the blessings to the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church at St. Paul and John Basilica, Rome. On 26 November a special audience of the Holy Father with the Bishops, priests, religious and priests of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church along with H.B. Baselios Cardinal Cleemis Catholicos at Vatican.
The new Cardinal will return to India on 30 November 2012.