Cardinal (Catholic Church)

senior ecclesiastical official of the Catholic Church

Cardinal is a clerical office in the Roman Catholic Church. Cardinals are counselors of the pope.[1]

Pope Innocent IV granted the use of the red hat to the cardinals in 1245. The red hat was a symbol of the cardinal's readiness to shed their blood in the cause of the church.[2]

College of CardinalsEdit

The collective name for cardinals is college of cardinals. They meet in a Papal conclave to elect a new Pope.[1]

When there is no pope, the cardinals direct the day-to-day affairs of the Church.[1]


The Coat of Arms of a cardinal who is not a bishop
  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 "Cardinal," Catholic Encyclopedia (2009); retrieved 2011-11-23.
  2. Chisholm, Hugh (1910). The Encyclopedia Britannica: A Dictionary of Arts, Sciences, Literature and General Information. Encyclopedia Britannica Company. p. 580.

Other websitesEdit

  "Cardinal (1)" . Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. 1913.