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Focus on the essential message of the faith, Pope tells catechists

Pope Francis celebrated a Mass for the jubilee of catechists on September 25 and encouraged them to focus on the proclamation of the Risen Lord. “We are being asked not to tire of keeping...

Jordanian journalist murdered at court; was charged with offending Islam

A Jordanian journalist was shot and killed as he arrived at a court in Amman to answer charges that he had offended Islam with a cartoon posted on his Facebook page. Nahed Hattar, who had...

Massive demonstration in Mexico against same-sex marriage

Over 200,000 people joined in demonstrations in Mexico City on September 24 to protest plans by President Enrique Pena Nieto for legal recognition of same-sex marriage. The demonstrators, dressed...

Pope backs Mexican bishops’ defense of life, marriage

On September 25, at the conclusion of Mass in St. Peter’s Square for the jubilee of catechists, Pope Francis delivered a brief Angelus address in which he expressed support of the Mexican...

Pope receives families of victims of terrorist attack in France

Pope Francis met with the relatives of the victims of the July 14 attack in Nice, France, in which Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel, a Tunisian, drove a truck into a crowd, killing 87 and injuring over...

Vatican Secretary of State assures nuncios: no major concessions in talks with China

Cardinal Pietro Parolin has reportedly assured Church diplomats that the Vatican will not allow the Chinese government a role in the appointment of new bishops. Speaking at a meeting of apostolic...

DRC President Kabila meets with Pope to discuss African country's unrest

Pope Francis met on September 26 with President Joseph Kabila of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), to discuss the continued violence and unrest in the African nation. Although a brief...

Realism necessary in handling European immigrants, says Croatian prelate

Church leaders "need to be very realistic about the crisis of refugees arriving in Europe," Cardinal Joip Bozanic of Zagreb told a meeting of European Catholic officials working with...

‘Angel of Dachau’ beatified

A German priest known as the “angel of Dachau” was beatified as a martyr in Würzburg, Germany, on September 24. Blessed Engelmar Unzeitig (1911-45) entered the Marianhill...

Continue to serve the sick with love, Pope tells women religious

Pope Francis received members of the Hospitaler Sisters of Mercy in a September 24 audience and encouraged them to persevere in their service to the sick. The community was founded in 1821 by the...

Chinese officials again take 'underground' bishop into custody to prevent appearance at prelate's funeral

For the 2nd time in less than a month, Chinese officials have taken an "underground" Catholic bishop on a trip to a remote part of the country, so that he cannot preside at the funeral of...

Schedule updated for papal visit to Sweden, Reformation celebration

The Vatican has updated the schedule for a visit by Pope Francis to Sweden, to join in a celebration of the Reformation. The Pontiff will leave Rome in the morning on Monday, October 31, arriving...

US exorcism rate soaring

The demand for exorcisms in the US has soared in recent years, two Catholic priests told the Daily Telegraph. The London newspaper—covering a story that is rarely mentioned in US...

Mexico: kidnapped priest found dead

A priest who was abducted last week from his parish in the Mexican state of Michoacan has been found dead of gunshot wounds. Father José Alfredo Lopez Guillen is the third priest to be...

Saudi Arabia deports Christians for celebrating Assumption

Saudi Arabia has deported 27 Catholics, all Lebanese Maronites, who were arrested for celebrating the feast of the Assumption in a private home. Saudi religious police raided the home in Al...

Jordan: Islamic party voters reject Christian candidates

In Jordan's legislative elections, Islamic voters refused to support Christian candidates, reports Archbishop Maroun Lahham, the patriarchal vicar for the Jerusalem patriarchate. Under...

San Marino liberalizes abortion law

The little European nation-state of San Marino has voted to allow for legal abortion in some circumstances. The San Marino Council approved legislation that allows for abortion in cases of rape,...

Rhode Island parishioners protest at Mass after homosexual music director's dismissal

A small group of parishioners at a parish in Providence, Rhode Island, sang their own song during the recitation of the Nicene Creed to protest the removal of a homosexual music director. Michael...

Pope recalls World Day of the Deaf

During his September 25 Angelus address, delivered in St. Peter's Square, Pope Francis recalled that the day was the World Day of the Deaf. “I wish to greet all the deaf people,...

Profiling Catholic presence in Georgia, Azerbaijan before papal visit

The Vatican has released a statistical profile of the Catholic presence in Georgia and Azerbaijan in advance of the visit to those two countries by Pope Francis, which will take place September 30...

Catholic bishops suspend involvement in 'national dialogue' talks in Democratic Republic of Congo

The Catholic bishops of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) have announced that they are backing away temporarily from involvement in national dialogue on elections, as tensions mount in the...

Polish bishops reject campaign by gay-right activists

The Catholic bishops of Poland have spoken out against a drive by homosexual activists to gain greater acceptance. The gay-rights campaign, organized around the theme, "Let's exchange a...

Canadian archbishop accepts award from dissident group FutureChurch

A Canadian archbishop has agreed to accept an award from the dissident Catholic group "FutureChurch." Archbishop Paul-André Durocher of Gatineau, Quebec, will be honored by...

New Vatican rules for testing miracles in causes for canonization

The Vatican's Congregation for the Causes of Saints has announced has issued new rules governing the medical boards that investigate reported miracles in connection with the causes of candidates...

China plans new restrictions on religious groups

The Chinese government has proposed strict new rules to regulate the activities of religious organizations, emphasizing that they must "not be controlled by foreign forces." Expanding...

Vatican becomes signatory of anti-corruption treaty

On September 19, the Vatican City State became a signatory of the United Nations Convention against Corruption, a 2003 anti-corruption treaty signed by 140 nations. In adhering to the treaty, the...

Philippine cardinal at Assisi: Islamist terrorists are ‘practical atheists’

Members of the Philippine Islamist militant group Abu Sayyaf are “practical atheists” whose actions manifest a “denial of God,” a Philippine cardinal said during the recent...

Chaldean synod begins and ends

The bishops of the Chaldean Catholic Church began a week-long synod in Erbil, Iraq, on September 22. Patriarch Louis Raphael I Sako told AsiaNews that the synod would examine the situation in the...

Charlotte bishop calls for prayer following violence

Bishop Peter Jugis of Charlotte has issued a statement on the violence and looting that has taken place in the North Carolina city following the fatal shooting of an African-American man by an...

Attack on Catholic church in Aleppo

A Syriac Catholic church in Aleppo has suffered damage from rocket and mortar fire. The Free Syrian Army, a rebel coalition group, attacked the church recently in violation of a cease-fire,...

Trump campaign forms Catholic advisory group

The Donald Trump presidential campaign has announced the formation of a Catholic advisory group. Members include Sen. Rick Santorum, Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback, and Father Frank Pavone of Priests...

At UN, Cardinal Parolin outlines Vatican 'foreign policy'

In a September 22 address to the UN General Assembly, the Vatican's Secretary of State offered an overview of the Holy See's concerns about world affairs. Cardinal Pietro Parolin opened...

Another Mexican priest kidnapped

Another Mexican Catholic priest has been kidnapped, and his fate remains unknown, just a few days after two priests were murdered in the state of Veracruz. Cardinal Alberto Suarez Inda of Morelia...

Archbishop Gerety, world's oldest bishop, dead at 104

Archbishop Peter Gerety, the retired Archbishop of Newark, died on September 20 at a nursing home in New Jersey. Archbishop Gerety, who led the Newark archdiocese from 1974 until his retirement...

Clinton, Trump invited to NY Catholic Charities fundraiser

Both leading American presidential candidates, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, have been invited to speak at the annual fundraising dinner for Catholic Charities in New York, archdiocesan...

Bishop Olmsted: Amoris Laetitia does not mean Communion for divorced/remarried Catholics

Bishop Thomas Olmsted of Phoenix, Arizona, has announced that Catholics who are divorced and remarried should not receive the Eucharist. Writing in his diocesan newspaper, Bishop Olmsted said...

Inter-faith dialogue thwarts extremists, says apostolic administrator of Jerusalem

Archbishop Pierbattista Pizzaballa, the apostolic administator of the Latin-rite Patriarchate of Jerusalem, has underlined the importance of inter-religious dialogue as a means of combatting...

Orthodox-Catholic commission reaches agreement on primacy

A joint Catholic-Orthodox theological commission has approved a statement on the primacy in Church history. The statement-- which covered the questions of both synodal government and primacy in...

Formal statutes approved for Vatican's new Communications Secretariat

Pope Francis has approved statutes for the Secretariat for Communications, the new Vatican office that has been created to coordinate and streamline the media operations of the Holy See. The...

Report truths, do not spread fears, Pope says to journalists

Journalists should be motivated by love of the truth, professionalism, and respect for human dignity, Pope Francis said in a September 22 address. Speaking to members of Italy's Naiotnal...

Coptic Orthodox leader urges support for Sisi

The head of the Coptic Orthodox Church called upon Coptic Christians in the United States to show their support for Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi as he traveled to New York for a UN...

Zambia: bishops criticize establishment of government religion ministry

Zambia’s bishops have joined the Protestant Council of Churches in Zambia in criticizing the government’s decision to establish a Ministry of National Guidance and Religious...

Archbishop Cupich: dialogue with Muslims more important than ever

There is an “urgent need to cultivate positive dialogue” with Muslims, Archbishop Blase Cupich of Chicago said in a statement. The prelate, who serves as co-chairman of the National...

Suspects arrested in murder of Nigerian priest

Nigerian police have arrested four suspects in the murder of Father John Adeyi. Father Adeyi, the vicar general of the Diocese of Otukpo, was kidnapped on April 24. His decomposed body was...

Syria: Kurdish soldiers loot Christian homes; archbishop escapes death

Kurdish forces fired bullets into the home of a Syrian Catholic archbishop as part of a campaign of intimidation against Christians. Archbishop Jacques Behnan Hindo, who is based in the...

USCCB report highlights plight of Southeast Asia’s refugees

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Migration & Refugee Services office has issued a report on the situation of refugees in Southeast Asia, some of whom are victims of human...

Slain Mexican priests knew assailants, prosecutor says

A Mexican prosecutor has said that two priest who were found dead in the state of Veracruz were acquainted with their assailants, and were meeting socially with them before the crime. Father...

Threats force cancellation of Australian conference by marriage supporters

A conference organized by Australian Christian groups to discuss opposition to same-sex marriage was cancelled because "threats of violence" received by the staff of the hotel where the...

Roman rumor: new drive to allow married priests?

A meeting between Pope Francis and Cardinal Claudio Hummes has touched off speculation that the Pope might support a move to allow the ordination of married men as priests. Cardinal...

Vatican confirms authority of bishop abducted by Chinese officials

The Vatican has confirmed that Bishop Peter Shao Zhumin has become the Bishop of Wenzhou, following the death of Bishop Vincent Zhu Weifang. Bishop Zhu died earlier this month, at the age of 90,...

Cardinal Parolin, in UN meetings, highlights role of religious leaders in fighting extremism

Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican Secretary of State, spoke on the responsibility of religious leaders to combat intolerance, and to provide education against extremism, in two separate September...

Archbishop of Canterbury: 'our worship is diminished' by lack of Christian unity

Speaking on September 20 at the interfaith prayer service in Assisi, the Archbishop of Canterbury said that because of the lack of unity among Christians "our worship is...

Papal appeal for Alzheimer’s patients

Following his September 21 general audience, Pope Francis issued an appeal for Alzheimer’s patients. Recalling that September 21 is World Alzheimer’s Day, the Pope asked the faithful...

Pope Francis: be merciful as the Father is merciful

Continuing his series of weekly addresses devoted to mercy, Pope Francis reflected on Luke 6:36-68 during his September 21 general audience. “We are reminded of our call to be merciful even...

Strive for holiness, cardinal tells new bishops

The prefect of the Congregation for Bishops celebrated Mass with bishops who have been named during the past year and called upon them to “make a total sacrifice of themselves all the way to...

Priest: fabric of family life being shaken in India

Many of India’s Catholic families face challenges from alcoholism and lack of prayer, according to executive secretary of the family commission of the nation’s Latin-rite...

Prelate: 1/3 of priests have left Damascus

A Syrian archbishop has told Aid to the Church in Need that “one in three priests has chosen to leave Damascus towards more peaceful countries.” Discussing the grave problems facing...

USCCB welcomes day of prayer for abuse survivors

The president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has welcomed Pope Francis’s call for episcopal conferences to designate a day of prayer for survivors of sexual abuse. The...

'God's name is peace,' world religious leaders affirm at Assisi day of prayer

Pope Francis joined 400 religious leaders in an interfaith prayer service for peace at Assisi on September 20, marking the 30th anniversary of the historic event organized by St. John Paul II. The event, organized by the St. Egidio community, drew together Christian, Jewish, Islamic, Buddhist, and other religious leaders. Among the prominent participants joining the Pontiff were the Orthodox...

Over 500 scholars affirm Church teaching on contraception

More than 500 scholars have signed a statement of support for the Catholic Church's teaching on contraception. At a press conference held at the Catholic University of America on September...

South African bishops appalled by deaths attributed to health-care cost cuts

The Catholic bishops of South Africa has decried the deaths of 36 psychiatric patients who had been removed from a care facility because of budget shortages. The bishops said that it was...

Cardinal Parolin to participate in Colombia peace conference

Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican Secretary of State, has agreed to participate in a ceremony marking the peace accord between the government of Colombia and the Revolutionary Armed Forces...

Two Mexican priests kidnapped, killed

Two Mexican priests were kidnapped and murdered in the state of Veracruz on September 18. The two priests, Fathers Alejo Nabor Jimenes Juarez and Joe Alfredo Juarez de la Cruz, were seized on...

Australian bishops speak out against 'ageism'

The Australian Catholic bishops' conference has issued a statement decrying "ageism" and calling for "renewed solidarity among generations, young and old." The...

Pope Francis: ‘I keep dreaming of a new European humanism’

In a message to a European bishops’ meeting in Sarajevo, Pope Francis emphasized the importance of the works of mercy. “To contribute to the rebirth of Europe, the Church, as a caring...

Nuncios appeal for peace

Following a three-day meeting in Rome, the Holy See’s nuncios and pontifical representatives issued an appeal for peace. The nuncios asked world leaders to “work harder and more...

Caritas criticizes Calais wall proposal

Caritas Social Action Network. the social action arm of the Church in England and Wales, has criticized the British government’s proposal to build a wall to keep migrants in Calais, France,...

Russian Orthodox official renews criticism of Ukrainian Catholics

A leading Russian Orthodox official has renewed his criticism of Ukraine’s Eastern-rite Catholics. Days after characterizing Eastern Catholics as obstacles to Christian unity, Metropolitan...

Vatican newspaper mourns Belgian euthanasia victim

The Vatican newspaper has published a front-page column lamenting the first reported death of a Belgian teenager from euthanasia. The column’s author, Ferdinando Cancelli, discussed his...

USCCB committee chairs: Catholic teaching on nature of marriage cannot change

The chairmen of the US bishops’ Committees on Doctrine and on Laity, Marriage, Family Life and Youth have issued a joint statement affirming the immutability of Catholic teaching on the nature...

Former Irish president backs challenge to Church teaching on contraception

Ireland's former President Mary McAleese has thrown her support behind a statement by a group of Catholic academicians, challenging the Church's teaching on contraception. McAleese...

Root causes of migrant crisis are man-made, says Cardinal Parolin

Speaking to a UN summit meeting on refugees and migrants, the Vatican's Secretary of State said that the greatest challenge for world leaders is "to identify and act on the root causes that...

Russian Orthodox official: Eastern-rite Catholics are obstacles to ecumenical unity

Speaking on September 16 at a meeting of a joint Catholic-Orthodox theological commission, the chief ecumenical officer of the Russian Orthodox Church said that the activity of the...

Lay member quietly resigned from papal abuse commission

A 2nd lay member has left the special papal commission on sexual abuse, the National Catholic Reporter has disclosed. Claudio Papale, a canon-law professor at the Pontifical Urbaniana, has...

Syrians suspicious of US motives, says Syrian bishop

Bishop George Abu Khazen of Aleppo reports that residents of the Syrian city are extremely skeptical of American intentions, particularly after a US air strike reportedly killed 90 Syrian government...

No injuries as man drives through police barrier in St. Peter's Square

An emotionally disturbed man crashed his car through barriers in St. Peter's Square on Friday evening, September 16, but was quickly apprehended by Vatican police. The man, who was not...

Regensburg address of Benedict XVI was prophetic: Cardinal Müller

Cardinal Gerhard Müller, the prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, said that the Regensburg address of Pope Benedict XVI was "prophetic," in a speech to...

Miracle of St. Januarius repeated in Naples

The blood of St. Januarius liquefied on September 19, his feast day, in the repetition of a familiar miracle in Naples, Italy. St. Januarius, who was martyred during the persecutions of...

Father Gabriele Amorth, outspoken exorcist, dead at 91

Father Gabriele Amorth, the world's most famous exorcist, died in Rome on September 16 at the age of 91. Father Amorth, who had served as official exorcist for the Diocese of Rome (he was...

Apostolic administrator seeks removal of Guam's Archbishop Apuron

An apostolic administrator is calling for the removal of Archbishop Anthony Apuron of Agana, Guam, in the face of multiple complaints of sexual abuse. Archbishop Savio Hon Tai Fai, who was...

Belgium reports first euthanasia of teenager

Authorities in Belgium have reported the legal death by euthanasia of a minor. Euthanasia is legal in Belgium, and in 2014 the country's law was amended to allow for euthanasia of children...

Pope visits neonatal unit, hospice

As part of his “mercy Friday” initiative during the jubilee year of mercy, Pope Francis visited a hospital and a hospice on September 16. In the morning, the Pope visited the...

Pope appeals for prayers for peace on September 20

Following his September 18 Angelus address, Pope Francis asked the faithful to join him in praying for peace on September 20, as he travels to Assisi. “I will go to Assisi for the prayer...

Italian widow beatified

An Italian widow and mother of seven was beatified in her hometown of Codrongianos, Sardinia, on September 17. Cardinal Angelo Amato, the prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints,...

Pope Francis: choose the Gospel, not the spirit of the world

During his September 18 Sunday Angelus address, Pope Francis challenged the pilgrims gathered in St. Peter’s Square to make a clear choice for the Gospel rather than the spirit of the...

Pope thanks Vatican police on 200th anniversary

Pope Francis celebrated Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica on September 18 for 200th anniversary of the Corps of Gendarmerie of Vatican City. In his homily, the Pope the Vatican police and...

Pope addresses nuncios on dealings with governments, selection of bishops

Pope Francis met with the Holy See’s apostolic nuncios and other pontifical representatives and urged them to “be a true expression of an outbound Church, a ‘field hospital.’” “In the immense task of ensuring the freedom of the Church before every form of power that wishes to silence Truth, do not delude yourselves that this freedom is solely the fruit of...

Have compassion on refugees, Pope tells Jesuit alumni

Pope Francis encouraged members of the European Confederation of the World Union of Jesuit Alumni and Alumnae to follow the example of the late Jesuit superior general Father Pedro Arrupe (1907-91)...

Filipino bishops condemn extra-judicial killings as death-squad violence mounts

The Catholic bishops of the Philippines have issued a strong statement condemning the extra-judicial killings of drug addicts and dealers as "sins that harm the dignity of the human...

Bishops challenge president to protect Christians in northern Nigeria

Saying that Christians face a "hurricane of violence" in northern Nigeria, the country's Catholic bishops have appealled to President Muhmmadu Buhari to renounce...

Guam: deacon calls for timely investigation of abuse charges against archbishop

Deacon Steve Martinez, who in the past was responsible for responding to sex-abuse complaints for the Catholic Church in Guam, has voiced concern that charges against Archbishop Anthony Apuron have...

Archbishop Chaput: 'exhausted' US political system needs spiritual renewal

In a major address on American political affairs, Philadelphia's Archbishop Charles Chaput lamented that this year's presidential election features "two such deeply flawed" candidates, but went on to say that American society as a whole is facing a crisis. "We've reached a moment when our political thinking and vocabulary as a nation seem exhausted," the...

Papal condolences on death of Italy's former President Ciampi

Pope Francis has sent a message of condolence to Italy's Senate, mourning the death of the country's former prime minister and president, Carlo Azeglio Ciampi.  Ciampi-- who was...

Mercy should guide all pastoral work, Pope tells new bishops

Speaking to newly appointed bishops on September 16, Pope Francis said: “The most precious richness you can bring from Rome at the beginning of your episcopal ministry is the awareness of...

Pope receives leading Russian Orthodox official

Pope Francis received Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, president of the Department of External Church Relations of the Moscow Patriarchate, in audience on September 15. According to the...

Buddhist leader meets with Pope

Pope Francis received the leader of Tendai Buddhism in a September 16 audience, according to the Holy See Press Office. Koei Morikawa, 91, became the 257th Tendai Buddhist head priest in 2015....

Catholic-Orthodox dialogue focuses on synodality, primacy

The Joint Commission for Theological Dialogue between the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church began an eight-day meeting on September 15. The meeting, hosted by the Archdiocese of...

Nuncios gather in Rome, discuss gender, Islam

106 of the 108 nuncios and other papal diplomatic representatives gathered in Rome on September 15 for three days of meetings as part of the extraordinary jubilee of mercy. On September 15, Msgr....

We have dignity because we are children of God, Pope tells biblical scholars

Pope Francis received members of the Italian Biblical Association on September 15 and referred to the theme of the association’s meeting, “Let us be human beings … male and...

USCCB committee chair: overcome partisanship, heed Catholic teaching on migration

As heads of state prepare for a September 19 UN meeting on migrants and refugees, the chairman of the US bishops’ Committee on Migration has called upon Catholics to “overcome the...

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