Fact Check: Pope Francis Did NOT Appoint Alex Soros Cardinal Of The Catholic Church

Fact Check

  • by: Lead Stories Staff
Fact Check: Pope Francis Did NOT Appoint Alex Soros Cardinal Of The Catholic Church Joke

Has Pope Francis appointed Alexander Soros cardinal deacon of the Roman Catholic Church? No, that's not true: The official list of all Catholic cardinals, provided to Lead Stories by the Vatican press office, does not include the son of billionaire philanthropist George Soros, and the original article making the claim was debunked by its editor as "humorous license."

The claim appeared in a video, no longer available but archived here, uploaded on TikTok on January 8, 2024, by user @life_racer207777 (archived here). It opened, translated from Romanian into English by Lead Stories staff:

πŸ€¦πŸ€¦πŸ€¦πŸ€¦πŸ€¦πŸ‘€πŸ‘€πŸ‘€πŸ‘€ Where is this world going... Oh God πŸ€¦πŸ€¦πŸ€¦πŸ€¦πŸ€¦πŸ€¦πŸ‡·πŸ‡΄πŸ‡·πŸ‡΄πŸ‡·πŸ‡΄πŸ‡·πŸ‡΄πŸ‡·πŸ‡΄πŸ‡·πŸ‡΄πŸ‡·πŸ‡΄πŸ‡·πŸ‡΄

This is what the post looked like on TikTok at the time of writing:

TikTok screenshot

(Source: TikTok screenshot taken on Fri Jan 12 07:49:10 2024 UTC)

The woman speaking in the video shows a screenshot of an article published on the Romanian website Ecopolitic.ro (archived here) on January 7, 2024. She then wonders why the news is not shaking the Catholic world, since Alex Soros, she claims, is an "undeclared homosexual" and the heir of George Soros (translation from Romanian to English by Lead Stories staff).

In 1997, George Soros founded the Open Society Foundations, a global network that funds independent groups working for justice, democratic governance, and human rights. In June 2023, he handed over control to his son Alexander.

In response to an inquiry from Lead Stories, the Vatican press office provided by email on January 10, 2024, the updated list of all current Catholic cardinals (archived here). Alexander Soros is not among them, as can be seen in the section of the names beginning with the letter "S" (archived here).

Cardinals are members of the Sacred College of Cardinals, whose duties, according to Encyclopedia Britannica (archived here), include electing the pope, serving as his principal advisors, and helping to lead the Roman Catholic Church throughout the world. They must be bishops, and the pope appoints them by announcing their names before the College of Cardinals in a private consistory (an assembly of clergy for the administration of justice and other matters).

According to the Vatican website, the last consistory took place on September 30, 2023 (archived here and here), when Pope Francis appointed 21 new cardinals, including the new head of the Vatican doctrine office and the heads of the churches in Hong Kong and Jerusalem, Juba, South Sudan, Cordoba, and Argentina.

The source of the information quoted in the Romanian article is a story published by the Spanish website Alerta Digital on December 28, 2023 (archived here). The following day, a disclaimer was published (archived here) stating that the article in question was based on a "humorous license" by the author to joke with readers.

Other false claims about Alex Soros debunked by Lead Stories can be found here and here.

  Lead Stories Staff

Lead Stories is a fact checking website that is always looking for the latest false, deceptive or inaccurate stories (or media) making the rounds on the internet.

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Lead Stories is a U.S. based fact checking website that is always looking for the latest false, misleading, deceptive or inaccurate stories, videos or images going viral on the internet.
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