ROME (AP) – One of Pope Francis’ top aides and future contender for the papacy, Philippine Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, has tested positive for the coronavirus, the Vatican said Friday.
Tagle, who heads the powerful Holy See office in charge of mission territories, last saw the pope during an official audience on August 29. He tested negative for the virus on September 7, but tested positive upon arrival in Manila on Thursday, the Vatican said.
In a statement on Friday, the Vatican press office said the 63-year-old cardinal has no symptoms and is in self-isolation in the Philippines. Meanwhile, the Vatican is tracking Tagle’s contacts.
Francis brought Tagle, the former Archbishop of Manila, to Rome this year to take the reins of one of the Vatican’s largest and most important congregations: the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, which oversees the Catholic Church in Asia, Africa and elsewhere. mission territories.
Subsequently, Francis made Tagle cardinal-bishop, a rank that reflects the high esteem he holds for him.
The promotions have raised Tagle’s profile in the Catholic hierarchy and given him experience working with the Holy See bureaucracy, two factors of considerable importance to contenders for the papacy.