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Archbishop Dolan To Become Cardinal, Local Clergy React

TARRYTOWN, N.Y. – Local clergy were surprised and glad to hear that Timothy Dolan, the Archbishop of New York, was being promoting to the rank of Cardinal.

“I'm very happy to hear the news,” Monsignor Louis J. Mazza said. Mazza leads the Immaculate Conception Church in Sleepy Hollow. “He's quite worthy of the promotion.”

Pope Benedict XVI announced Friday that Dolan would be elevated to the rank of cardinal in a ceremony to be held on Feb. 18, 2012. 61-year-old Dolan has lead the Roman Catholic Archdiocese for almost three years.

Dolan said in a statement he was “honored, humbled and grateful.”

“This is not about privilege, change of colors, hats, new clothes, places of honor, or a different title,” Dolan said. “Jesus warned us about all that stuff. No: this is about an affirmation of love from the Pope to a celebrated archdiocese and community, and a summons to its unworthy archbishop to serve Jesus, His Church universal, His vicar on earth, and His people better.”

Dolan will become the eighth Archbishop of New York to be named a cardinal and is one of 21 other Catholic officials to be named to the College of Cardinals. The College of Cardinals serves as the pope's counselors. When a pope dies, the College of Cardinals gathers to select a new pope by majority vote.

Mazza had no hesitations when asked whether Dolan would make a good cardinal.

“He'll do quite well,” he said.

Monsignor Raymond Bynre agreed with Mazza. Bynre heads the Immaculate Conception Church in Irvington.

“I think that's terrific,” he said.

Bynre described Dolan as a good man who was very friendly and gave great talks, although he admitted Dolan was “a little more conservative than I'd like.”

The Rev. Gilberto Angel-Neri of St. Theresa of Avila Parish in Sleepy Hollow was not available to comment on Dolan's promotion.

The Rev. Lucian Beltzner of Transfiguration Church in Tarrytown declined to comment on the news.

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