Pope Francis: No one can use religion as a pretext for violence

Tirana, Albania, Sep 21, 2014 / 04:02 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis opened his trip to Albania praising the “coexistence” between members of different faiths in the country, while condemning those who “consider themselves to be the 'armour' of God while planning and carrying out acts of violence and oppression.” “May no one use religion,” the Pope said, “as a pretext for actions against human dignity and against the fundamental rights of … [Read more...]

After brutal persecution, Albania ‘reopened’ to missionary zeal

Tirana, Albania, Sep 21, 2014 / 03:45 am (CNA/EWTN News).- During Mass at Mother Teresa square as part of his one-day trip to Albania, Pope Francis recalled the country's vicious history of anti-religious persecution, saying it is now ready for the Gospel to flourish. “Recalling the decades of atrocious suffering and harsh persecutions against Catholics, Orthodox and Muslims, we can say that Albania was a land of martyrs: many bishops, priests, men and women religious, and laity … [Read more...]

Girl’s Christmas letter to atheist dictator shows plea for peace

Tirana, Albania, Sep 20, 2014 / 05:28 pm (CNA).- A little girl’s Christmas letter asking Albanian dictator Enver Hoxha to pray for peace, not knowing of his repressive and murderous atheistic rule, has been preserved in an Albanian museum exhibit dedicated to religious belief. The letter was displayed at the Albanian National Museum in Tirana, for the special exhibition “Faith.” “We displayed that letter because we want to show that nobody was aware of what was … [Read more...]

Albania prepares for papal Mass

Tirana, Albania, Sep 20, 2014 / 01:34 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- A Franciscan involved in the preparations for Pope Francis’ trip to Albania said that he hopes for a surprise from a Pope who has made a habit of breaking his routine to visit the sick. “We set the area with young people and sick people in the front, at the right and the left of the altar. Pope Francis will address young people at the beginning of the Mass, but he is not expected to go and spend time with sick people. But, … [Read more...]

Weapons, low funding hinder Middle East humanitarian aid

Rome, Italy, Sep 20, 2014 / 07:53 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Foreign weapons and a lack of funding are among the serious challenges facing humanitarian response efforts in the Middle East, said participants at a recent conference in Rome. Leaders of the Caritas Internationalis family met Sept. 15-17 to address the escalating crises throughout the Middle East and discuss a coordinated regional and international response. According to Caritas Internationalis secretary general Michel Roy, the … [Read more...]

The liturgical reform, as seen by one of its protagonists

Rome, Italy, Sep 19, 2014 / 08:18 pm (CNA).- The newly published memoirs of Fr. Louis Bouyer, who was intimately involved in the reform of the Roman liturgy following Vatican II, reveal some of the relevant committee's doings, a prominent vaticanista has noted. “Being called to serve on one of the preparatory commissions for Vatican II, Bouyer immediately realized from his own experience its greatness and its wretchedness, and soon pulled back from it,” wrote Sandro Magister … [Read more...]

Martyrs’ memory to be a focus of Pope’s visit to Albania

Tirana, Albania, Sep 19, 2014 / 06:04 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Focused on the memory of the martyrs, Pope Francis’ one-day journey to Albania is aimed at restoring the link between the country and its Catholic roots, which had been disturbed as secularization has advanced there. Pope Francis will visit Albania Sept. 21, with the theme of “Together with God, toward the hope that does not disappoint.” The trip's logo represents a Christian people rising from the blood of … [Read more...]


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