“Let me be a listening shepherd to you all” – New Archbishop of Manila

In his inaugural mass as the 33rd Archbishop of Manila, His Eminence Jose Fuerte Cardinal Advincula expressed his renewal of commitment to be the listening shepherd as he leads his new flock – the Archdiocese of Manila.

Speaking before the priests, religious men and women and the mayors of five cities under the jurisdiction of the metropolitan see, Cardinal Advincula said that like St. John the Baptist, he said that he shall serve as God’s herald.

“As his name suggests, John the Baptist is the herald of God’s mercy. As Christ’s herald, I too must proclaim God’s mercy. I stand here before you today as that herald,” he said.

The new leader of the country’s first and oldest archdiocese asked for prayers from the faithful as he fulfills his duties as Christ’s listening shepherd.

“If the Lord were to use me as His herald, then that means, I must listen attentively to Christ, what He wills me to do for His sheep. And He reveals His will as our Good Shepherd when he laid down his life for us that we may be saved and have life to the full. Please pray for me that I may have a heart after that of Christ our Good Shepherd – a listening shepherd to Christ’s bidding – ever ready to suffer for and serve Christ’s sheep,” Cardinal Advincula said.

“I cannot feed my flock unless I listen first to their needs, their longings. While listening to them, I would be able to journey with them – in their sorrow and joy, in their suffering and glory – and collaborate work with them, to bring them closer to Christ. I pray that Christ grant me the grace to be a listening shepherd to His flock, so that I can journey with you and lead you all back to Christ our Good Shepherd,” he added.

Cardinal Joe – as he’s fondly called by his family and flock in Capiz – also pleaded to the religious and lay faithful of the Archdiocese to be a listening shepherd and learn from one another “how to listen after the heart of Christ, our Good Shepherd”.

The Cardinal has been elevated by His Holiness Pope Francis to the College of Cardinals on November 28, 2020 and officially appointed Archbishop of Manila on March 25, 2021, succeeding Luis Antonio G. Cardinal Tagle who was sent to Rome to serve as Prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples.

The 9th Filipino cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church is the second archbishop of Capiz who became Manila archbishop, next to the late Jaime L. Cardinal Sin. (Lem Leal Santiago/SOCOM-Binondo Church \ Photo by Marica Santos/RCAM-AOC)


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