At the beginning of the consistory ceremony in Saint Peter’s Basilica, Cardinal Roche addressed the Pope on behalf of the new Cardinals. “Our mission today is to help you carry this cross and not to increase its weight. With great joy, we wish to walk at your side knowing that to you have been entrusted the keys of the Kingdom” he said. “We draw strength from you, Holy Father, from your witness, your spirit of service and your call to the entire Church to follow the Lord with greater fidelity.... From you, Holy Father, we learn to resist the temptation of any narrowness of mind and heart which shrinks to the size of self instead of expanding ‘to the measure of the fullness of Christ’.” The Cardinal concluded by expressing gratitude to the Holy Father, offering the Cardinals’ “profound respect and our obedience and, should the Lord wish it, even to the shedding of our blood (usque ad sanguinis effusionem)”.
Cardinal Vincent Nichols of Westminster was among the 180 cardinals present in the Basilica. Several bishops from England and Wales were also in Rome for the ceremony as were thousands of pilgrims who had travelled to Rome for the Consistory.