Coat of arms of Cardinal Sandri
Our Patron His Eminence Leonardo Cardinal Sandri
Prefect of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches
Benedict XVI created him Cardinal-Deacon of S. Biagio e Carlo ai Catinari in the consistory of 24 November 2007. He delivered the message of thanksgiving to the Pope on behalf of the new cardinals.
Cardinal Sandri, in his role as Prefect of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches, was named by Pope Benedict XVI be one of two co-presidents of the special Synod of Bishops for the Middle East, to be held at the Vatican in October 2010.
He speaks English, French, German, Italian and Spanish. On 12 June 2012 Cardinal Sandri was appointed a member of the Congregation for Catholic Education.
In November 2014 the Vatican has lifted its ban on the ordination of married men to the priesthood in Eastern Catholic churches outside their traditional territories, including in the United States, Canada and Australia. Pope Francis approved lifting the ban, also doing away with the provision that, in exceptional cases, Eastern Catholic bishops in the diaspora could receive Vatican approval to ordain married men. In recent years, however, some Eastern Catholic bishops went ahead with such ordinations discreetly without Vatican approval. Cardinal Sandri, signed the decree 14 June 2014. It was published later online in the Acta Apostolicae Sedis, the official periodical through which Vatican laws and decisions are published.