Archbishop Robles Ortega of Monterrey, who will receive the red hat from Pope Benedict XVI on November 24, recounted to reporters this week the reaction of his elderly parents to the news that he will soon be a cardinal.
The 58 year-old archbishop is from Mascota, Mexico, and is the third of sixteen children, of whom fifteen are still living. His father is now 90 and his mother 80.
“I should acknowledge that my parents have always lived in an atmosphere of faith, they taught us to live that way, to live under the providence of God, under his loving gaze, and therefore my parents interpret everything that happens in life as a grace which they already know neither I deserve it nor do they,” he explained.
“They taught us to see life in this way. We don’t deserve anything, God is good, he is our Father and as such He shows us the way,” the cardinal-elect said.
He said that when he told his parents the news, they were very moved, “because they know that this is a very special grace, but they also know it is a responsibility, and as believers and persons of faith, they immediately take refuge in the strength of prayer.”
“They told me: ‘Take courage, just as the Lord has helped you before, He will continue to help you with this responsibility and we will continue to pray for you together with your siblings as we have always done,” Archbishop Ortega said.