On 88th birthday, Benedict XVI lauded for emphasis on mercy

Rome, Italy, Apr 16, 2015 / 11:49 am (CNA/EWTN News).- The Vatican official charged with organizing the upcoming Jubilee for Mercy says the topic was the “heart” of Benedict XVI’s pontificate, due to the emphasis he placed on love, which is lived out in mercy. “We cannot forget that Pope Benedict, his first encyclical was Deus Caritas Est (God is Love). That means the center, the heart of his pontificate was put in the light of love, and love and mercy are the … [Read more...]

High-profile Rome exorcist: ‘ISIS is Satan’

Rome, Italy, Apr 15, 2015 / 02:25 am (CNA).- In a recent Facebook post, well-known Roman exorcist Father Gabriele Amorth said the Islamic State (ISIS) “is Satan,” and he also questioned the lack of response from Western nations. “ISIS is Satan. Things first happen in the spiritual realms, then they are made concrete on this earth,” he said in an April 8 post on the social media website. Father Amorth continued, “there are only two spiritual realms: The Holy … [Read more...]

Priest who died on the Titanic could be on path to sainthood

London, England, Apr 14, 2015 / 04:02 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- When the Titanic began to sink on April 15, 1912, Father Thomas Byles had two opportunities to board a lifeboat. But he forewent those opportunities, according to passengers aboard the sinking ocean liner, in order to hear confessions and offer consolation and prayers with those who were trapped aboard.   Now, a priest at the former church of Fr. Byles in England is asking that his beatification cause be opened. Some 1,500 … [Read more...]

A dark, tense history: behind Turkey’s protest of the Holy See

Rome, Italy, Apr 14, 2015 / 12:25 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis' comments on the extermination of Armenian Christians in early 20th century Turkey prompted a strongly worded criticism from the Turkish Foreign Ministry and led to the withdrawal of Turkey's ambassador to the Holy See. But what's the full story? As the April 24 centenary commemoration of the Armenian genocide approaches, tensions between Turkey and Armenia run high. Despite this, Pope Francis remembered the … [Read more...]

Is there a light in the dark for Turkey’s invisible Christians?

Rome, Italy, Apr 11, 2015 / 04:02 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Despite Turkey's claim of religious freedom, Christians there have faced ongoing hostility, including  government oppression and murder – but a new legal status ignites hope that things will improve. As far as the Turkish government is concerned, “Islam is the only possibility,” said Nikos Tzoikos, analyst of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople. Tzoikos spoke with CNA in November of 2014 before Pope … [Read more...]

Paris wax museum unveils statue of Pope Francis

Paris, France, Apr 10, 2015 / 04:09 pm (CNA).- The directors of the Grévin Wax Museum in Paris presented the first statue of Pope Francis that is now part of its popular collection.   The statue was unveiled April 2 in the atrium of Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris.   (function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id; js.src = "//connect.facebook.net/en_US/sdk.js#xfbml=1&version=v2.3"; … [Read more...]

Doctrine divides while justice unites? One author’s new take on an old claim

Rome, Italy, Apr 10, 2015 / 12:04 am (CNA).- As the Church prepares to conclude its celebration of the 50th anniversary of Vatican II later this year, one book is taking a hard look at the council's vision of ecumenism in a world where attitudes toward social justice are constantly in flux. Is it true, as some say, that doctrine divides, while justice unites? Can social justice really build Christian unity? Is it capable of declaring Christ to the world? Justice, Unity, and the Hidden … [Read more...]