Pope elevating 13 new cardinals in ceremony marked by COVID

ROME (AP) — Pope Francis is formally elevating 13 new cardinals in a ceremony marked in every way by the coronavirus pandemic. Two of the cardinals stayed home, the rest eschewed the usual celebrations and St. Peter’s Basilica was practically empty for Saturday’s service. The ceremony, known as a consistory, is the seventh of Francis’ pontificate and once again reflected the Argentine pope’s effort to name cardinals from places that have never had them before or whose service to the church he wants to highlight. Nine are under age 80 and eligible to vote in a conclave to elect a new pope, further solidifying the majority of Francis-appointed prelates in the College of Cardinals.