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Eastern Catholic Cardinals

New Cardinal Bechara Rai, Lebanon's Maronite Patriarch, center, talks with new U.S. Cardinal James M. Harvey, former prefect of the papal household, before Pope Benedict XVI's audience in Paul VI hall at the Vatican 26 Nov. Also pictured at left is new Syro-Malankara Cardinal Baselios Cleemis Thottunkal of Trivandrum, India. The pope created six new cardinals from four different continents at a 24 Nov. consistory. (Photo: CNS/Paul Haring) 

At the end of the ceremony, the College of Cardinals had 211 members, 120 of whom were under the age of 80 and thus eligible to vote in a conclave to elect a new pope.

The new consistory raises the percentage of Asian electors from 7 percent to 9 percent. Catholics in Asia account for just over 10 percent of the worldwide Catholic population.

At the same time, the percentage of European electors dropped slightly, to just over 51 percent. But the continent remains statistically over represented, since the Vatican reports that fewer than 24 percent of the world’s Catholics live in Europe.

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Tags: Lebanon Pope Benedict XVI Syro-Malankara Catholic Church Maronite Eastern Catholics