Does Francis like being Pope? A behind-the-scenes chat in the Philippines

Manila, Philippines, Jan 29, 2015 / 03:12 pm (CNA).- During his pastoral visit to the Philippines Jan. 15-19, Pope Francis held an unscheduled meeting at the Apostolic Nunciature in Manila with 40 Jesuit priests and told them how it feels to be the Successor of Peter.   After the meeting with families at the Asia Arena on Jan. 16 in Manila, Pope Francis met with members of his own Jesuit order, including Father Antonio Spadaro, director the of the Jesuit magazine Civilta Cattolica, who … [Read more...]

A love for peripheries, the link between Pope Francis and St John Bosco

Vatican City, Jan 29, 2015 / 12:07 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Though he is member of the Society of Jesus, Pope Francis shares with the Salesians of St. John Bosco a  love for the peripheries, and this is why he has often visited Salesian structures during his pastoral visits. Pope Francis visited the parish of Sacro Cuore in Rome, the last church built by St. John Bosco, on Jan. 19, 2014, and there he emphasized the work Salesians do there with refugees. When he visited Tirana, Albania on … [Read more...]

Measles are making a comeback, so what does the Church teach about vaccines?

Denver, Colo., Jan 29, 2015 / 04:03 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Disneyland is supposed to be the Happiest Place on Earth, not the place where you contract a highly contagious, once-eradicated disease. Unfortunately, that is what happened at Disneyland in California, starting back in December. The measles virus, likely carried by a tourist from a foreign country, started a chain of infections that has now reached at least 87 people in seven states and Mexico. The outbreak has also resurfaced … [Read more...]

Iraqi priests work to save historic Christian writings from Islamic State

Erbil, Iraq, Jan 29, 2015 / 02:01 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Effectively exiled from his friary in Mosul by the Islamic State last year, Fr. Najeeb Michaeel, O.P. is working to preserve Christian manuscripts through digitization, recording a memory of Iraq's Christian past. Fr. Najeeb Michaeel is an Iraqi native who studied in the U.S., and founded in 1990 the Center for the Digitization of Oriental Manuscripts to foster the collection and recording of ancient manuscripts which he had started … [Read more...]

Beyond the digital, into the heart: a Vatican take on communication

Vatican City, Jan 29, 2015 / 12:01 am (CNA/EWTN News).- The Vatican's top communications official said that true interaction requires more than just phones and internet – and that dialogue is an interpersonal encounter we learn even from our mother's womb. “The first way of communication, the source of my learning is the womb of my mother,” Archbishop Claudio Maria Celli told CNA at the Jan. 23 presentation of Pope Francis’ message for World Communications … [Read more...]

On feast of St. Thomas, teachers called to mercifully challenge students

Washington D.C., Jan 28, 2015 / 06:16 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Catholics must be “merciful teachers” in eliciting the best from everyone around them, said a prominent Dominican preacher on the feast day of St. Thomas Aquinas. “Our call, religious, ordained, and laity alike, is to be 'merciful teachers who wake up the world',” the Very Rev. Ken Letoile, O.P., told Mass attendants at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C. He cited Pope … [Read more...]

Jesuit laments car bomb attack in Syria, scorns media silence

Homs, Syria, Jan 28, 2015 / 05:09 pm (Aid to the Church in Need).- “Most of them were students at the university, young people who had not left the city. So what sort of message does this attack send out now? I believe they were deliberately targeted.” These were the words of Father Hilal Ziad, S.J., commenting on the Jan. 21 midday car bomb explosion that killed 15 and wounded 50 others in the center of Homs. The killing was indiscriminate, and there were Christians among both … [Read more...]