New Vatican bank official reportedly part of ‘gay lobby’

Vatican City, Jul 18, 2013 / 05:10 pm (CNA).- The priest appointed last month as an interim prelate of the so-called Vatican Bank is associated with the “gay lobby” at the Holy See, according to an article by analyst Sandro Magister released today. Magister's column for L'Espresso recounts that Monsignor Battista Mario Salvatore Ricca, who was appointed temporary prelate of the Institute for Works of Religion June 15, had a relationship with another man – the … [Read more...]

Indulgences not a ‘magical formula,’ canon lawyer explains

Lincoln, Neb., Jul 18, 2013 / 04:39 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- In contrast with media reports of “time off of purgatory” for Pope Francis' Twitter followers, a canon lawyer says indulgences are a way that the Church encourages Christians to prayer. “Because the Church has the spiritual authority that Christ has given it, the Church can invite us to particularly sanctifying moments and particularly sanctifying opportunities,” JD Flynn, special assistant to Bishop James … [Read more...]

John Paul II film festival seeks movies ‘that inspire’

Miami, Fla., Jul 18, 2013 / 04:37 pm (CNA).- Preparing for its fourth event in recent years, a Florida-based international film festival named for Pope John Paul II is looking for submissions that witness to society through compelling beauty and inspiring art.“John Paul II’s emphasis on The New Evangelization recognized the power in the medium of cinema and this festival speaks to his legacy,” said Frank William Brennan, the festival’s director of film … [Read more...]

Pope Francis will visit slum, not use popemobile in Rio

Vatican City, Jul 18, 2013 / 01:55 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- During next week's World Youth Day in Rio de Janeiro, Pope Francis will be staying in a modest residency, visiting a slum and traveling without his popemobile. “It was thought that the Pope does not feel he is treated differently from others,” said Sister Irma Terezinha, who is in charge of the Center for Sumaré where he will be staying. “He does not like individualism, everything is done the same way for … [Read more...]

Pope grieves over WYD bus accident in French Guiana

Vatican City, Jul 18, 2013 / 11:14 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis shared his condolences after hearing of a deadly traffic accident in French Guiana involving a bus that was taking young people to World Youth Day. “His Holiness Pope Francis shares wholeheartedly in the pain of the families afflicted by the death of one of their own, and in that of the leaders and organizers of the group,” read the July 18 message. “The Pope assures them of his prayers and he expresses … [Read more...]

US axes AIDS relief funding to Church in South Africa

Rome, Italy, Jul 18, 2013 / 10:40 am (CNA/EWTN News).- The United States has stopped funding AIDS relief programs in South Africa organized by the Catholic Church, handing the money instead over to the country's government. “We have a problem because the American funding, the President's Emergency Plan for Aids Relief, known as PEPFAR is coming to an end,” Benedictine Monk Gerhard Lagleder told Vatican Radio. “I am in Europe today to beg,” added the monk, … [Read more...]

Vatican: Change of Popes ‘intensified’ World Youth Day

Vatican City, Jul 18, 2013 / 05:09 am (CNA/EWTN News).- A Vatican spokesman said the change of Popes which occurred from the announcement of World Youth Day to its fruition has caused some adaptations to the event for the new Roman Pontiff. “The trip had already been decided, but the program has also been adapted, we might indeed say intensified and enriched with further events, with the change of pontificate,” Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi said at a July 17 press … [Read more...]