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cardinal (in the Roman Catholic Church)

cardinal [Lat.,=attached to and thus "belonging to" the hinge], in the Roman Catholic Church, a member of the highest body of the church. The sacred college of cardinals of the Holy Roman Church is the electoral college of the papacy. Its members are appointed by the pope. A cardinal's insignia resemble those of a bishop, except for the characteristic red, broad-brimmed, tasseled hat, which is conferred by the pope but not subsequently worn. Cardinals, the "princes of the church," are styled "Eminence."

The term cardinal was formerly applied to important clergymen of all sorts and countries, but in the Middle Ages it was restricted to the Roman province. The college of cardinals is the modern derivative of the clergy of the ancient diocese of Rome, used by the pope for advice and transaction of business. Pope Sixtus V set the maximum number of cardinals at 70, a tradition maintained for centuries until the pontificate of Pope John XXIII. Since then it has increased to well over 100, approaching twice that at times. The number number of cardinals eligible to vote in papal elections (those under 80 years old) was limited to 120 by Paul VI and John Paul II, but John Paul appointed more than that number several times. Following the lead of Pius XII, John XXIII and Paul VI promoted the international character of the college. John Paul continued to expand international representation in the college, and Europeans now account for only about half of the cardinals eligible to vote in papal elections.

Classes of Cardinals

There are three classes of cardinals. Cardinal bishops are the bishops of seven sees around Rome (Ostia, Velletri, Porto and Santa Rufina, Albano, Frascati, Palestrina, and Sabina and Poggio Mirteto) and Eastern-rite patriarchs; the first of these in order of creation is dean of the college and ex officio bishop of Ostia in addition to his other see. Cardinal priests are mostly archbishops outside the Roman province; the title "cardinal archbishop" —often applied to these men—simply represents the union of the two dignities in one man. Cardinal deacons are priests with functions in the papal government. Cardinal priests and cardinal deacons have titles corresponding to churches of the Roman diocese.

The Cabinet of the Pope

Apart from papal elections, the cardinals have great importance as the privy council of the pope. Hence those who are not bishops away from Rome must live at Rome. They meet with the pope in consistories, public and secret, but most of the business they transact is done in their various jurisdictional capacities. Thus the cardinals in residence at Rome make up a cabinet for the pope, directing the work of the Curia Romana, as the papal administration is called. This is made up of standing committees and courts, the departments of administration divided among them. Since there is no division of powers in the headship of the church, most organs of the Curia have power to judge, to command, and to legislate. The acts of these bodies are validated by papal approbation, and they therefore bind Roman Catholics as direct pontifical acts. Only the pope himself can speak finally in matters of faith and morals (see infallibility). The major divisions of the Curia are the secretariat of state, the Roman congregations, and the Roman tribunals. There are also pontifical commisions under some of the congregations; a number of pontifical councils with special responsibilities (e.g., for ecumenical dialogue with other Christians, for the family, for issues relating to the sanctity of life, and for dialogue with nonbelievers); curial offices responsible for administering the Vatican property and treasury; and other bodies.

The Secretariat of State

The secretariat of state, headed by the cardinal secretary of state, works most closely with the pope and is the most important body of the Curia; it is divided into two sections. The section for general affairs handles affairs relating to the papal office, distributes encyclicals and other official papal documents, oversees the official media and the press office of the Vatican, and maintains the church's statistical bureau. The section for relations with states is responsible for the Vatican's diplomatic relation with foreign governments and international organizations.

Roman Congregations

A Roman congregation consists of a group of cardinals, headed by a prefect, together with two staffs that transact most of the business—one of major officials and the other of minor officials chosen by competitive examination and assigned to less important affairs. The congregation proper, i.e., the cardinals, makes all major decisions.

The following are the Roman congregations (founded by Sixtus V in 1588; reorganized by Pius X in 1908, by Paul VI at the close of the Second Vatican Council, and by John Paul II in 1988): the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (formerly, of the Holy Office; see Inquisition), concerned with doctrinal orthodoxy; the Congregation for the Eastern Churches, for all concerns of those following Eastern rites in communion with the pope; the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, for all public worship of the Latin rite, liturgical books, and the like, including sacred music and art; the Congregation for the Causes of the Saints, for overseeing the process of canonization and verifying sacred relics; the Congregation for Bishops, for recommending candidates for bishop and establishing dioceses; the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples (formerly Congregation for the Propagation of the Faith; the Propaganda), for all concerns of the missions of the Latin rite; the Congregation for the Clergy, for all concerns relating to all secular priests and deacons; the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, for all concerns relating to religious orders and their members; and the Congregation for Catholic Education, for the administration of seminaries and Catholic educational institutions. Of the Roman congregations, the two whose influence is felt most deeply throughout the church are probably the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples.

The Roman Tribunals

The Roman tribunals are three secret courts, the highest of the church; each is headed by a cardinal, and its work is handled by trained canonists. They are the Apostolic Penitentiary, for all cases of conscience appealed by any Catholic to the pope and for the regulation of indulgences; the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signature, the court of final appeal of the church, considering only cases involving the members of, or appealed from, the Rota; the Tribunal of the Roman Rota, the court of appeal from diocesan courts and the lower court of Vatican City, hearing all cases requiring trial and evidence, except cases of conscience, cases of canonization, and cases involving sovereigns of states (reserved to the pope in person).

Bibliography

See studies by G. D. Kittler (1960), and F. B. Thornton (1963).

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cardinal

car·di·nal / ˈkärdnəl; ˈkärdn-əl/ • n. 1. a leading dignitary of the Roman Catholic Church, nominated by the pope and collectively forming the Sacred College. ∎  (also cardinal red) a deep scarlet color like that of a cardinal's cassock. 2. a New World songbird of the bunting family, with a stout bill and conspicuous crest, in particular the northern (or common) cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis), the male of which is scarlet with a black face. • adj. of the greatest importance; fundamental. DERIVATIVES: car·di·nal·ate / ˈkärdnələt; ˈkärdn-ələt; -ˌlāt/ n. (in sense 1 of the noun) car·di·nal·ship / ship/ n. (in sense 1 of the noun).

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cardinal (in zoology)

cardinal or redbird, common name for a North American songbird of the family Fringillidae (New World finch family). In the eastern cardinal, Richmondena cardinalis, the male is bright scarlet with black throat and face; the female is brown with patches of red. Both sexes have crests and red bills. The Arizona, gray-tailed, Louisiana, and San Lucas cardinals frequent the S United States and Mexico. The pyrrhuloxia of the SW United States, gray with red face, crest, breast, and tail, is called gray cardinal or parrotbill. Cup-shaped nests are built by male and female, and the male helps rear the young. Cardinals are essentially monogamous, and are not very gregarious. They are classified in the phylum Chordata, subphylum Vertebrata, class Aves, order Passeriformes, family Fringillidae.

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cardinal

cardinal1 a leading dignitary of the Roman Catholic Church. Cardinals are nominated by the Pope, and form the Sacred College which elects succeeding popes (now invariably from among their own number). The word is recorded from Old English and comes from Latin cardinalis, from cardo, cardin- ‘hinge’ (See also cardinal2); the derivation reflects the notion of the important function of such priests as ‘pivots’ of church life.

Cardinals wear a deep scarlet cassock with a wide-brimmed red hat; the cardinal's hat is often taken as a symbol of his office, and is the emblem of St Bonaventura, St Jerome, and St Robert Bellarmine (1542–1621).

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cardinal

cardinal2 of fundamental importance (formed as cardinal1).
cardinal humour each of the four chief humours of the body.
cardinal number a number denoting quantity (one, two, three, etc.) as opposed to an ordinal number (first, second, third, etc.).
cardinal points the four main points of the compass (north, south, east, and west).
cardinal virtues the chief moral attributes of scholastic philosophy: justice, prudence, temperance, and fortitude, identified by the classical philosophers and adopted by Christian moral theologians.

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cardinal

cardinal chief, principal. XIII. — (O)F. cardinal or L. cardinālis, f. cardō, cardin- hinge; in Eng. first applied to the four virtues of justice, fortitude, temperance, prudence, on which conduct ‘hinges’; see -AL 1.
So cardinal sb. any of the seventy princes (cardinal bishops, priests, and deacons) of the Roman Church that constitute the Pope's council or the Sacred College. XII. — (O)F. — medL.

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cardinal

cardinal Priest of the highest rank in the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church after the Pope. Some cardinals are heads of departments of the Curia Romana, whereas others are primates of national churches or other senior bishops. They are nominated by the Pope, whom they advise. On the death of a Pope they meet in secret conclave to elect his successor.

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Cardinal

Cardinal. A member of the ‘Sacred College’ of priests selected by the pope to assist him in governing the Roman Catholic Church. In 1994 there were 167 cardinals in all. On the death of a pope they meet in secret session to elect his successor; since 1971 those over the age of 80 may not vote.

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"Cardinal." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of World Religions. . Encyclopedia.com. 22 May. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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cardinal

cardinal
1. In Bivalvia, applied to the area around the hinge. The word is derived from the Latin cardinalis meaning ‘hinge’.

2. (Cardinalis cardinalis) See CARDINALIDAE.

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"cardinal." A Dictionary of Zoology. . Encyclopedia.com. 22 May. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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cardinal

cardinal Any member of a family of small to medium-sized, bunting-like birds that are confined to North and Central America. Family Fringillidae.

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cardinal

cardinalannal, channel, flannel, impanel, multichannel, panel •cracknel •grapnel, shrapnel •carnal •antennal, crenel, fennel, kennel •regnal •anal, decanal •adrenal, officinal, penal, renal, venal •signal, spignel •hymnal • cardinal • libidinal • ordinal •attitudinal, latitudinal, longitudinal •altitudinal •imaginal, paginal •marginal, submarginal •aboriginal • virginal • disciplinal •seminal •criminal, liminal, subliminal •abdominal, nominal, phenomenal, pronominal •noumenal •germinal, terminal •vaticinal, vicinal •sentinel • intestinal • Juvenaldoctrinal, final, semi-final, spinal, urinal, vaginal •quarterfinal •cantonal, O'Connell •cornel • nounal •atonal, Donal, hormonal, Monel, patronal, polytonal, tonal, zonal •motional •lagoonal, monsoonal, tribunal •communal •Chunnel, funnel, gunnel, gunwale, runnel, tunnel •autumnal • meridional •embryonal, Lionel •diagonal, heptagonal, hexagonal, octagonal, tetragonal •trigonal • orthogonal • occasional •divisional, provisional, visional •delusional, fusional, illusional •regional • original • coronal • arsenal •medicinal •impersonal, interpersonal, personal, transpersonal •irrational, national, passional, rational •factional, fractional, redactional, transactional •confessional, congressional, expressional, impressional, obsessional, processional, professional, progressional, recessional, secessional, sessional, successional •connectional, correctional, directional, interjectional, intersectional, sectional, unidirectional •ascensional, attentional, conventional, declensional, intentional, tensional, three-dimensional, two-dimensional •conceptional, exceptional, perceptional •durational, locational, oblational, relational, vocational •rotational •additional, positional, tuitional, volitional •fictional, jurisdictional •inscriptional • optional • proportional •devotional, emotional, notional, promotional •constitutional, evolutional, institutional, substitutional •constructional, fluxional, instructional •conjunctional, dysfunctional, functional, multifunctional •versional • seasonal •colonel, diurnal, eternal, external, fraternal, infernal, internal, journal, kernel, maternal, nocturnal, paternal, supernal, vernal

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