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Vatican communications efforts merged, new office will supervise work CWN - 22 hours ago

Pope Francis has established a new Vatican office, the Secretariat for Communications, to supervise all of the communications and public-relations efforts of the Holy See. The new office, formally created in an apostolic letter that was released on June 27, was created at the suggestion of a papal commission, chaired by Lord Patten, that examined all the media operations of the Vatican and...

Be men of prayer, faith, and witness, Pope tells metropolitan archbishops CWN - 22 hours ago

Pope Francis entrusted the pallium to 46 metropolitan archbishops appointed during the past year and exhorted them to be follow the example of the apostles and be men of prayer, faith, and...

Questions raised about financial dealings in Paraguay diocese whose bishop was removed CWN - 13 hours ago

An Associated Press report has uncovered financial irregularities in a diocese in Paraguay whose bishop was ousted by the Vatican last year. Bishop Rogelio Livieres Plano was removed from his...

Pope links apostles, Marian devotion CWN - 21 hours ago

In his Angelus address delivered in St. Peter’s Square on June 29, the Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul, Pope Francis recalled that the two saints came from distant lands to proclaim the Gospel in...

Pope asks: ‘Do we believe that Jesus can heal?’ CWN - 22 hours ago

In his June 28 Angelus address, Pope Francis reflected on the Gospel of the day (Mark 5:21-43), which recounted the raising of a synagogue official’s child and the healing of a woman with a...

Catholic-Orthodox unity ‘one of my main concerns,’ says Pope CWN - 23 hours ago

Pope Francis told a delegation from the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople that the restoration of “full, visible communion” between the Catholic Church and the Orthodox churches “represents...

Papal condemnation of terrorist attacks CWN - 0 hours ago

Stating that “the Holy Father once again condemns the violence which generates so much suffering,” Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican’s Secretary of State, sent out telegrams of condolence in Pope...

Speaking at UN, Cardinal Turkson stresses link between climate change, world poverty CWN - 12 hours ago

The president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace underlined the link between environmental degradation and world poverty, as expressed in the papal encyclical Laudato Si’, in a June 29...

Syrian Orthodox prelate begs West: stop arming Islamic militants CWN - 14 hours ago

Syrian Orthodox Patriarch Ephrem II pleaded for Western nations to stop providing weapons for Syrian militant groups, in an interview with Vatican Insider. “We are not asking the west for...

US bishops' statements on Supreme Court ruling CWN - 14 hours ago

The US Conference of Catholic Bishops has provided a useful collection of links to statements by dozens of American bishops responding to the Obergefell...

Encyclical on environment ‘filled us with immense satisfaction,’ says Ecumenical Patriarch CWN - 22 hours ago

In a message to Pope Francis issued in commemoration of the Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople welcomed Pope Francis’s encyclical on the...

4 blesseds, including St. Thérèse’s parents, to be canonized on October 18 CWN - 23 hours ago

During an ordinary consistory of the College of Cardinals, as Pope Francis and the cardinals celebrated Terce (Midmorning Prayer) in the Apostolic Palace, the Pontiff formally approved a decree on...

Pope appoints envoy for commemoration of death of Jan Hus CWN - 23 hours ago

In a Latin-language letter dated April 9 and released on June 27, Pope Francis formally appointed Cardinal Miloslav Vlk, the retired archbishop of Prague, as his special envoy for the commemoration...

Papal video message to peoples of Ecuador, Bolivia, and Paraguay CWN - 24 hours ago

As Pope Francis’s apostolic journey to Ecuador, Bolivia, and Paraguay draws near, the Pontiff has spoken to the peoples of those nations in a video message. “My wish is to be with you, to share...

Al Azhar condemns ISIS, urges defeat by 'every possible means' CWN - 13 hours ago

Al Azhar University, the Egyptian institution that is regarded as the leading intellectual authority of Sunni Islam, has condemned the “heinous” violence of the Islamic State, the AsiaNews service...

46 new archbishops to receive pallium CWN - June 26

Forty-six newly appointed archbishops will receive the pallium this year, with Pope Francis blessing the vestments during Mass on the feast of Sts. Peter and Paul, June 29. The pallium is a white...

Education-- especially of young women-- is vital work, Pope tells leaders of scouting movement CWN - June 26

“Education is the indispensable means for enabling girls to grow into active and responsible women,” Pope Francis said in a June 26 address to delegates of the International Catholic Conference of...

400-year-old Jesuit college in London will close CWN - June 26

Heythorp College, a 400-year-old Jesuit institution in London, will close in 2018, administrators have announced. Heythorp College specialized in philosophy and theology, and provided advanced...

US Supreme Court rules all states must recognize same-sex marriage CWN - June 26

In a sweeping historic decision released on June 26, the US Supreme Court has ruled that the Fourteenth amendment to the US Constitution requires all states to grant legal recognition to same-sex marriages. By a 5-4 vote, the Supreme Court justices settled the case of Obergefell v. Hodges by issuing a new legal definition of marriage, and overturning the laws of all the states that currently...

No Vatican decision yet on Medjugorje, leading journalist reports CWN - June 26

Directly contradicting a report that circulated widely in the Italian media yesterday, a leading Vatican journalist has reported that the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) has not...

Archbishop Forte lists 5 key synod issues CWN - June 26

In remarks published in Famiglia Cristiana, Archbishop Bruno Forte discussed what he sees as the five most important issues of the upcoming Synod of Bishops on the family. Archbishop Forte, the...

Paulists leaving Canada CWN - June 26

Amid declining priestly vocations, the Paulist Fathers are leaving Canada, where they have ministered for over a century. “This is a decision no religious community wants to make," said Father...

Melkite bishops lament secularization, add Latin-rite saints to liturgical calendar CWN - June 26

The bishops of the Melkite Catholic Church, an Eastern Catholic church in full communion with the Holy See, held their annual meeting in Lebanon from June 15 to 20. In his opening address,...

Holy See, Palestine sign comprehensive agreement CWN - June 26

The Holy See and Palestine have signed a comprehensive agreement on the life and activities of the Church in Palestine. The agreement, signed at the Apostolic Palace on June 26, takes the place of the “basic agreement” that the two parties had reached in 2000. “In contrast with the earlier agreement, the present one is being signed by the Holy See and the State of Palestine; this is...

European bishops’ conferences to discuss pastoral care of migrants CWN - June 26

Bishops and other representatives from Europe’s episcopal conferences will begin a four-day meeting on June 29 to discuss the pastoral care of migrants. “We cannot pretend that nothing is...

Pope recalls collaboration with Armenian Catholic patriarch CWN - June 26

Pope Francis has sent a telegram of condolence following the death of Nerses Bedros XIX Tarmouni, the patriarch of the Armenian Catholic Church. Recalling his “close collaboration” with the...

Don’t hinder development of pollution standard, USCCB committee chair tells Congress CWN - June 26

The chairman of the Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has urged Congress to “oppose legislation and appropriations riders...

$25M given to retired religious from national collection CWN - June 26

The National Religious Retirement Office has granted $25 million to 394 religious communities to help pay for medication, nursing care, and other expenses associated with the care of retired...

Chaldean Patriarch suggests single unified patriarchate for Iraqi Christians CWN - June 25

Chaldean Catholic Patriarch Louis Raphael Sako has made a dramatic appeal for unity among the embattled Christians of Iraq, suggesting that three ancient churches should combine in a single...

Criminal charges against Minnesota archdiocese imperil payments to abuse victims CWN - June 25

The criminal charges filed by local prosecutors against the Archdiocese of St. Paul-Minneapolis could endanger insurance payments to victims of sexual abuse. A settlement with abuse victims...

Coptic Pope denounces 'Gospel of Barnabas' CWN - June 25

Coptic Orthodox Pope Tawadros II has denounced the “Gospel of Barnabas,” a document discovered in 2012, as a fraud, the Fides news service reports. The Egyptian prelate said that the “Gospel of...

Pope receives B'nai B'rith delegation, speaks of Catholic-Jewish friendship CWN - June 25

Pope Francis met on June 25 with a delegation from B’nai B’rith International, and expressed his gratitude to predecessors who had advanced friendly ties between Catholics and Jews. The Pope...

UN committee demands Ireland allow referendum votes on legal abortion, women's position in home CWN - June 25

Two referendums must be held to vindicate the economic, social and cultural rights of women in Ireland, according to the United Nations. A referendum on abortion and another on the position of...

Irish archbishop files defamation case against TV network for portraying him as a pedophile CWN - June 25

An Irish-born archbishop who resigned in 2010 from his post in Nigeria has filed a defamation lawsuit against the television network that identified him as a pedophile. Archbishop Richard Burke,...

Holy See 'presides in charity,' Pope reminds future nuncios CWN - June 25

Speaking on June 25 to future Vatican diplomats, Pope Francis said: “The true authority of the Church of Rome is the charity of Christ.” The Pope reminded students at the Pontifical...

CDF reaches negative judgment on Medjugorje, Italian journalists report CWN - June 25

The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) has reached a negative conclusion regarding the authenticity of the reported Marian apparitions at Medjugorje, according to Italian media...

Prelate: the Church in Pakistan refuses to be silenced CWN - June 25

As 15,000 people gathered at the Portuguese shrine of Ronda da Lapinha to pray for persecuted Christians, the president of Pakistan’s episcopal conference said that the Church there refuses to be...

Philippine cardinal welcomes overture by Islamist rebels CWN - June 25

In a move hailed by a Philippine cardinal, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) has begun to surrender its weapons following a peace agreement. Beginning in 1978, the MILF used violence in...

Indonesian court upholds ban on interfaith marriages CWN - June 25

The Constitutional Court of Indonesia has upheld the nation’s 1974 ban on interfaith marriages. The nation’s bishops, according to AsiaNews, supported a change in the law. In the world’s most...

Individualism is greatest wound to families, says Italian cardinal CWN - June 25

In an article that appeared on the Vatican newspaper’s front page, Cardinal Gualtiero Bassetti of Perugia said that an “individualistic mentality” is the wound that most damages family life...

Registration for World Meeting of Families nears 12,000 CWN - June 25

The number of paid registrants for the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia was 11,821 as of June 15, according to a statement released at a Vatican press conference on June 25. Besides the...

Armenian Catholic patriarch dead at 75 CWN - June 25

The head of the Armenian Catholic Church has died of a heart attack, according to a Lebanese media report. Born in Cairo in 1940 and ordained to the priesthood in 1965, Nerses Bedros XIX Tarmouni...

President Obama: remarks at dinner during Ramadan CWN - June 25

The White House hosted an Iftar dinner on June 23 to mark the end of fasting on one of the days of the month of Ramadan. Ramadan began this year on June 17; it concludes on July 17. “Our...

USCCB committee chair backs bills on exports, travel to Cuba CWN - June 25

The chairman of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on International Justice and Peace has expressed his support for the Freedom to Export to Cuba Act of 2015, sponsored by...

Exhibition of Shroud concludes in Turin; 1.5 million pilgrims attended CWN - June 24

About 1.5 million people attended the public exhibition of the Shroud of Turin, which concluded today. Archbishop Cesare Nosiglia said that this year’s exhibition, which began on April 19 and...

Egyptian government in systematic campaign to eliminate literature by Islamic extremists CWN - June 24

The Egyptian government is removing extremist Islamic literature from libraries, bookstores, and mosques, the Fides news service reports. Sheik Mohammed Abdel Razek, an official of the...

Irish police informed in 1973 about notorious pedophile priest, commission told CWN - June 24

Irish police were informed of sexual abuse by a notorious Irish Catholic priest as early as 1973, an investigating commission has been told. A psychiatrist informed the gardai (police) in 1973...

Israeli bishop fears rise in anti-Christian violence by Jewish extremists CWN - June 24

Attacks on Christian churches in Israel by Jewish extremists reflect a dangerous trend toward greater violence, a Catholic bishop has warned. Bishop William Shomali, an auxiliary of the...

Negative judgment on Medjugorje could split Church, says noted Italian writer CWN - June 24

As rumors swirl in Rome that the Vatican will soon issue a statement on the reported Marian apparitions at Medjugorje, a noted Italian journalist has warned that a negative judgment could prompt...

Indian government takes action against Caritas CWN - June 24

The Indian government has placed Caritas India on its watch list, saying that the Catholic charity may be "involved in anti-India activities." “Any transaction that the organization makes through...

Holy See diplomat assesses draft of UN’s new development agenda CWN - June 24

Archbishop Bernardito Auza, apostolic nuncio and permanent observer of the Holy See to the United Nations, has issued a statement on the “zero draft,” a document that, once finalized, will guide the...

Patriarch urges Muslims to work for Iraqi reconciliation, unity CWN - June 24

In a message to Muslims on the occasion of Ramadan, the head of the Chaldean Catholic Church, an Eastern Catholic church in full communion with the Holy See, called for national unity and...

Pope Francis: ‘maintain and protect the marital bond’ for the sake of the children CWN - June 24

Continuing his series of Wednesday reflections on the family, Pope Francis devoted his June 24 general audience to the wounds suffered in marriage and family life, especially the wounds suffered by...

Buddhist-Catholic dialogue focuses on suffering, liberation, and fraternity CWN - June 24

Forty-six Buddhists and Catholics from the United States have traveled to Rome for six days of dialogue devoted to suffering, liberation, and fraternity. “Catholic-Buddhist interreligious...

Court rules against Texas diocese in HHS mandate case CWN - June 24

The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that East Texas Baptist University, Westminster Theological Seminary, the Catholic Diocese of Beaumont, and Catholic Charities of Southeast Texas are not...

Do more to help refugees fleeing the Islamic State, USCCB committee chair urges CWN - June 24

The chairman of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Migration called upon the Obama administration to do more to help Syrian and Iraqi refugees, especially those who have...

Continue ecumenical dialogue in face of division, Pope says in message CWN - June 24

Pope Francis, in a message released on June 23, recalled the 50th anniversary of the formation of the joint working group between the Catholic Church and the World Council of Churches, an...

Papal foundation weighs proposals for funding development projects in Latin America CWN - June 23

The board of the Populorum Progressio Foundation—set up by St. John Paul II to provide support for development projects in Latin America—is meeting in Guayaquil, Ecuador this week to evaluate...

Sister Nirmala, successor to Mother Teresa, dead at 81 CWN - June 23

Sister Nirmali Joshi, who succeeded Mother Teresa of Calcutta as the leader of the Missionaries of Charity, died on June 22 at the age of 81. Sister Nirmala was born in Ranchi, India to Hindu...

Synod of Bishops releases working document for October meeting CWN - June 23

The Synod of Bishops has released the instrumentum laboris, or working document, of the 14th Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, which will take place in October and be devoted to “the vocation and the mission of the family in the Church and in the contemporary world.” The working document followed reflection by episcopal conferences on the final document of last October’s...

Orthodox cathedral desecrated in Alaska CWN - June 23

An Orthodox cathedral was recently desecrated in Kodiak, Alaska, according to an Alaska Public Media report. “It’s clear from the pattern of destruction that this dear soul is deeply troubled and...

European bishops’ conferences discuss gender theory, refugees CWN - June 23

The secretaries-general of Europe’s episcopal conferences gathered in Prague from June 18 to 21 to discuss gender theory and refugees. “Inclusion, compassion, and equality are the terms that,...

Greenland approves same-sex marriage, adoption CWN - June 23

In a 27-0 vote, Greenland’s parliament recently approved same-sex marriage and the adoption of children by homosexual couples, according to a report by the Library of Congress’s Global Legal...

4th Fortnight for Freedom begins CWN - June 23

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has begun its fourth annual observance of the Fortnight for Freedom to raise awareness of threats to religious liberty. This year’s theme is “the...

Vatican newspaper discusses Argentine influences on Pope’s encyclical CWN - June 23

Writing in L’Osservatore Romano, journalist Silvina Perez discussed the Argentine influences on Pope Francis’s new encyclical. Argentina’s Matanza River basin, she said, is “ranked number eight...

Bishops back First Amendment Defense Act CWN - June 23

Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone, the chairman of the US bishops’ Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage, and Archbishop William Lori, chairman of the bishops’ Ad Hoc Committee for...

USCCB president, local bishop lament Charleston church massacre CWN - June 23

In the days following the massacre at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina, the president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) and the...

Allies should have bombed rails to Nazi death camps, Pope says CWN - June 22

Pope Francis criticized the world's "great powers" for failing to curb the Nazi Holocaust during World War II. In off-the-cuff remarks during a visit to Turin, the Pope said that the Allies were...

Indian bishops decry sexual assault on nun CWN - June 22

India’s Catholic bishops have issued a statement condemning a sexual assault on a nun in Raipur, and calling for increased security to protect Christians. A woman religious of the Salesian...

Ghana: bishop troubled by people's habit of cursing CWN - June 22

In Ghana, a Catholic bishop has chided the faithful for invoking curses on people with whom they are angry. Bishop John Yaw Afoakwah of Obuasi said that the frequent use of curses—often on the...

Historic church on Sea of Galilee reopens after arson attack CWN - June 22

Thousands of Israeli Christians flocked to the Church of the Multiplication of Church of the Loaves and Fish, on the shore of the Sea of Galilee, for Sunday Mass on June 22, as the church was...

Nigerian priest released by kidnappers; diocese says no ransom paid CWN - June 22

A Nigerian Catholic priest who was kidnapped on June 8 has been released unharmed, the Fides news service reports. Father Emmanuel Akingbade was abducted by armed men, who broke into his rectory,...

Notorious Irish pedophile priest should never have been ordained, probe witnesses argue CWN - June 22

An Irish investigation commission has heard evidence that a notorious pedophile priest may have molested more than 200 children, and that he should never have been ordained, since his misconduct was...

Massive rally in Rome supports traditional family, opposes gender-theory education CWN - June 22

Several hundred thousand people gathered in Rome on June 20 to demonstrate in support of the family and opposition to gender theory and the legal recognition of same-sex unions. Despite steady...

Catholic & Orthodox patriarchs urges Christians to join moderate Muslims in campaign against extremists CWN - June 22

The Catholic and Orthodox Patriarchs of Antioch have called upon Christians to work with moderate Muslims against the rise of religious extremism. Noting that many Muslims are “working with their...

Mexico's top court rules for same-sex marriage CWN - June 22

Mexico’s Supreme Court has ruled that governments throughout the country should grant legal recognition to same-sex marriage. The court’s June 19 decision was based on the finding that...

Pope asks Waldensians for pardon CWN - June 22

On June 22, Pope Francis concluded his two-day pastoral visit to the northern Italian city of Turin and asked the Waldenses, or Waldensians, for pardon for actions by Catholics in history that “were...

In Turin, Pope venerates Shroud, addresses Salesians, speaks to youth about love CWN - June 22

On June 21, Pope Francis began a two-day pastoral visit to the northern Italian city of Turin, where he venerated the famed Shroud and delivered five talks and a homily. Speaking to workers who...

Pope Francis: the world of work should be open to the young CWN - June 22

Pope Francis received members of the Italian National Federation of the Knights of Labor in audience on June 20 and emphasized that the world of work should be open to the young. Italy’s current...

St. Paul and the martyred dioceses of North Africa are our models, Pope tells biblical scholars CWN - June 22

Pope Francis received members of the Catholic Biblical Federation in audience on June 19 and spoke extemporaneously in response to remarks by Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, the federation’s new...

Pope praises sporting spirit in address to Special Olympics competitors CWN - June 19

Pope Francis gave his encouragement to Italian competitors in the Special Olympics at an audience on June 19. “It is beautiful and meaningful that young people and adults find in sport and...

Did Vatican cardinal plan to keep transaction secret from Pope Francis? CWN - June 19

An Italian police wiretap reportedly caught a ranking Vatican official saying that Pope Francis should not be informed about a proposed €30-million ($34 million) transaction. In an investigation...

Archbishop Nienstedt sought to limit investigation of his conduct, report charges CWN - June 19

Archbishop John Nienstedt, who resigned his week from his post as Archbishop of St. Paul-Minneapolis, Minnesota, had earlier tried to limit an investigation into charges of personal misconduct that...

Vatican statement for Ramadan: Christians and Muslims should unite against religious violence CWN - June 19

In a message to the world’s Muslims, issued for the start of Ramadan, the Pontifical Council for Inter-religious Dialogue has called for cooperative action against religious violence. The Vatican...

Vatican envoy urges UN: protect children in wartime CWN - June 19

The Vatican’s representative at UN headquarters in New York has called for more effective international action to protect children in warfare. Archbishop Bernardito Auza told a UN Security...

Holy Land’s bishops condemn arson attack on historic church CWN - June 19

The Assembly of Catholic Ordinaries of the Holy Land has condemned the June 18 arson attack on the Church of the Multiplication of Church of the Loaves and Fish, built on the shore of the Sea of...

Pope meets with Syrian Orthodox patriarch, laments persecution of Christians CWN - June 19

Pope Francis received the head of the Syrian Orthodox Church in audience on June 19 and lamented the “terrible trials” suffered by Christians in the Middle East. The Syrian Orthodox Church, which...

Cardinal criticizes presidential candidate’s remarks on encyclical CWN - June 19

Cardinal Peter Turkson, the president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, criticized comments made by presidential contender Jeb Bush as he discussed Pope Francis’s encyclical Laudato...

Encyclical will inspire Caritas ‘for years to come,’ says cardinal CWN - June 19

The Philippine cardinal who serves as president of the Church’s confederation of relief and development agencies said that Pope Francis’s second encyclical will “inspire the work of Caritas...

UN leader, Obama praise encyclical CWN - June 19

President Barack Obama and United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon issued separate statements on June 18 welcoming Pope Francis’s second encyclical letter. “I welcome His Holiness Pope...

President Obama issues Ramadan statement CWN - June 19

President Barack Obama has issued a statement marking the beginning of the month of Ramadan. “As the new crescent moon brings in the holy month of Ramadan, Michelle and I send our warmest...

Supreme Court backs church in lawsuit against Arizona city CWN - June 19

In a unanimous decision, the Supreme Court struck down an Arizona city’s ordinance that had hindered a church from posting directional signs to its Sunday services. Gilbert, a city of 230,000,...

USCCB welcomes Laudato Si’ CWN - June 19

The president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has issued a statement on behalf of his brother bishops welcoming Pope Francis’s second encyclical “with an open heart and with...

Working document of upcoming Synod of Bishops to be released June 23 CWN - June 18

The Holy See Press Office has announced that the instrumentum laboris, or working document, of the upcoming Synod of Bishops on the family will be released on June 23. Three of the synod’s...

Pope Francis’ 2nd encyclical released (includes link to full text) CWN - June 18

The Holy See has published the text of Pope Francis’s second encyclical letter, Laudato Si’, subtitled “on care of our common home.” The encyclical, dated May 24 (Pentecost Sunday) and released June 18, has 246 paragraphs and six chapters: “What is happening to our common home,” “The Gospel of creation,” “The human roots of the ecological crisis,” “Integral ecology,” “Lines of approach and...

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