From Europe’s Christians, a call for a vision of freedom with and for others

Rome, Italy, May 10, 2015 / 06:08 am (CNA/EWTN News).- True freedom rejects mere consumption and satisfaction and embraces a duty to rescue the migrant, to save women from violence, and to help young people struggling to work and care for their families. In short, freedom includes responsibility towards God and neighbor, Europe’s Christian leaders have said. “Our Christian freedom is God-given, rooted in Christ, and calls us into a life of service of one another. Christ challenges … [Read more...]

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Rome prepares for Holy Year of Mercy – with ice cream

Rome, Italy, May 7, 2015 / 06:05 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pilgrims and tourists strolling down the streets of Rome in the coming months may come across an unexpected treat – a special “Jubilee of Mercy Ice Cream,” created in honor of the upcoming Holy Year. Pope Francis has proclaimed the special Holy Year of Mercy, which is to last from Dec. 8, 2015, the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, to Nov. 20, 2016, the Solemnity of Christ the King. The special Jubilee ice cream … [Read more...]

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Ahead of Ireland’s marriage referendum, Dublin archbishop looks to Pope Francis

Dublin, Ireland, May 7, 2015 / 03:01 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Both Pope Francis’ clear affirmation of marriage as a union of a man and a woman and his efforts to reach out to those who reject this are vital for Christians in the gay marriage debate, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin said on Wednesday. “We are all struck by the manner in which Pope Francis seems to be able to speak clearly about doctrine, and yet respect and embrace those who cannot find their way to follow that … [Read more...]

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Pope Francis blesses image of children killed in Maryland fire

Rome, Italy, May 6, 2015 / 12:03 am (CNA/EWTN News).- After reading a letter while visiting Rome’s North American Seminary detailing the death of two young girls in a house fire, Pope Francis blessed their picture and a small statue to be given to their parents. “The Holy Father read the story about what happened and he was very moved by it. He prayed for the family and for the girls, and in fact he even put his hand on their picture as a sign of his affection for them,” Father Aaron Qureshi tol … [Read more...]

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California’s soon-to-be saint hailed as a man ahead of his time

Rome, Italy, May 3, 2015 / 05:02 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Experts in California history, archeology and the life of Bl. Junipero Serra have praised him as a passionate missionary with a vision that extended far beyond his own generation. “I think that's a characteristic of great people. They're not bound up by the restrictions of their generation, they see ahead,” Mons. Francis J. Weber told CNA April 30, in reference to the life of Bl. Junipero Serra. He compared Serra to … [Read more...]

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Funeral for Germanwings crash victims held in Barcelona

Barcelona, Spain, May 3, 2015 / 04:17 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Barcelona’s famous Sagrada Familia Basilica hosted a funeral for the 150 passengers of the Germanwings flight that crashed into the French Alps in March. Cardinal Lluis Martinez Sistach of Barcelona presided over the April 27 ceremony. During his homily, Cardinal Sistach told the families of crash victims “we all carry your sorrow and your prayers in our heart.” He also said “we have to have courage to live … [Read more...]

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A crisis in the German church? Synod questionnaire would suggest so

Vatican City, May 2, 2015 / 05:44 pm (CNA).- The Synod of Bishops began receiving in April responses to a questionnaire that had been sent to dioceses the world over in preparation for October's Synod on the Family. The results from Germany indicate that most Catholics there hope for an openness to divorce and remarriage, as well as homosexual acts. The synthesis of responses from Catholics in Germany was released by the nation's bishops conference on April 16. The 17-page document, … [Read more...]

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