Pope Francis prays for victims of fire in Buenos Aires

Vatican City, Feb 7, 2014 / 04:32 pm (CNA).- Pope Francis sent a message of condolence, offering his prayers for the victims of a Feb. 5 fire at a warehouse in Buenos Aires that left seven firefighters and two National Guard soldiers dead. “I ask God to grant his consolation and strength to those affected by such a tragic misfortune and to inspire feelings of fraternal solidarity in all in order to help confront this adversity in the best way possible,” Pope Francis said. He … [Read more...]

Removal of abortion drug-promoting blog is pro-life ‘victory’

Lima, Peru, Feb 7, 2014 / 02:47 pm (CNA).- An international pro-life group has led a successful advocacy effort to remove a blog that had been promoting an illegal abortion drug in Peru. “This is a significant victory because this website was the primary means of advertising and promoting the so-called ‘safe abortion hotline’,” said Carlos Polo, director of the Latin American office for the Population Research Institute, in a Jan. 31 briefing. “And the hotline … [Read more...]

Materialism, ‘rejection’ of Christianity factors in World War I

Washington D.C., Feb 7, 2014 / 01:42 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Scholar and author George Weigel proposed that World War I was caused and prolonged not only by political struggles and complex intra-continental alliances, but by materialism, Social Darwinism, and a rejection of Christianity. The cultural conditions underlying the Great War, he maintains, still hold lessons for us today. World War I began and continued “in no small part, because 'Men had forgotten God',” Weigel … [Read more...]

Pope encourages faithful to be humble disciples of Christ

Vatican City, Feb 7, 2014 / 11:28 am (CNA/EWTN News).- In his daily Mass, Pope Francis spoke about the witness of John the Baptist from the Gospel, highlighting how the saint lived and died with humility and urging all to follow in his example. “Do we go on the path of Jesus Christ? The path of humiliation, of humility, of lowering for the sake of service?” the Pope asked in his Feb. 7 homily. Centering his reflections on the Gospel passage from John, which recounts the death … [Read more...]

Vatican: UN oversteps its boundaries in report conclusions

Vatican City, Feb 7, 2014 / 08:42 am (CNA/EWTN News).- In a statement released by the Vatican, Fr. Federico Lombardi criticized the U.N. child protection committee for its tone and “lack of desire” to recognize the Holy See’s efforts in protecting children. “(T)he Committee’s comments in several directions seem to go beyond its powers and to interfere in the very moral and doctrinal positions of the Catholic Church,” the Vatican spokesman observed in his … [Read more...]

Pope in WYD message: poverty leads us to true happiness

Vatican City, Feb 7, 2014 / 04:28 am (CNA/EWTN News).- In his message for the 29th World Youth Day, Pope Francis draws his theme from the beatitude on poverty, emphasizing that it teaches us joy, as well as the proper attitude to have towards those who are poor. “To be blessed means to be happy. Tell me: Do you really want to be happy?” the Pope asked in his Feb. 6 message for the 29th World Youth Day, which takes place this Palm Sunday, on April 13. “In an age when we … [Read more...]

Stunning adult stem cell developments evoke hope, caution

Washington D.C., Feb 7, 2014 / 04:02 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Remarkable advancements in stem cell biology are enabling scientists to reprogram mature cells into a variety of different tissues – but experts say these methods should be used carefully to avoid ethical questions and inadvertent cloning. While the new technology is an “exciting and surprising development,” said Brendan Foht, assistant editor of “The New Atlantis” bioethics journal, “some important … [Read more...]