I really enjoyed meeting and interviewing Dolores Foster Williams. Actually, she’d make a good cardinal.
When Pope Francis named 19 new cardinals Jan. 12, many Catholics cheered what seemed to be an emphasis on diversity, with half of the red hats going to bishops from non-European countries, including parts of the developing world.
But Dolores Foster Williams of Chicago was not exactly pleased.
“I didn’t note any African-Americans on the list,” said the 84-year-old Williams, who has made eradicating racism in the church her life’s work.
A retired teacher and the author of Institutional Racism in the Catholic Church, Williams sees the lack of an African-American cardinal as the “undeniable tip of the church racism iceberg.”
“The cardinals are the ones who elect the pope, so we have no representation there. Why aren’t we at the table?” The answer, she says, is blatant racism and nepotism.