Mr. Speaker, today I express my sincere congratulations to Toronto's archbishop, Thomas Collins, on his upcoming elevation to cardinal.
As this country's 16th cardinal, Archbishop Collins will become the primary spokesman for the church in English Canada. He enters the College of Cardinals as Canada's third active member, joining Cardinal Marc Ouellette, president of the Congregation of Bishops in the Vatican, and Cardinal Jean-Claude Turcotte, the Archbishop of Montreal.
Archbishop Collins' appointment is a wonderful reflection on him personally, on his character, his capabilities and his contributions to Canada and to the church. It also recognizes the importance of the Archdiocese of Toronto, which is home to more than one million Catholics.
In addition, Archbishop Collins' elevation to Cardinal is a great honour for Canada; a tribute to our country in the eyes of the Holy See.
As a Roman Catholic member of Parliament, I look forward to celebrating this great event in Rome on behalf of Canadians this February 18. May God bless and guide Archbishop Collins in his new responsibilities as a cardinal.