Pope calls for anti-human trafficking meeting at Vatican

Vatican City, Aug 23, 2013 / 12:04 am (CNA).- At Pope Francis' request, Vatican experts will gather this upcoming November with the aim of better tackling the growing scourge of human trafficking.“We must be grateful to Pope Francis for having identified one of the most important social dramas of our time and that he has had enough trust in our Catholic institutions to ask us to arrange this working group,” said Bishop Marcelo Sánchez Sorondo, chancellor of the … [Read more...]

Gentleness key to dialogue, Pope tells Japanese students

Vatican City, Aug 22, 2013 / 12:01 am (CNA).- Pope Francis told a group of young Japanese students and their teachers that gentleness is essential in order to foster peace and fruitful dialogue with other cultures. “What is the deepest attitude we must have to dialogue, and not fight?” he asked them. “Gentleness, the capacity to meet people and cultures with peace.” The students and professors present traveled from Tokyo for their Aug. 21 meeting with the Pope. They … [Read more...]

Benedict XVI’s students will meet to discuss God, secularism

Rome, Italy, Aug 21, 2013 / 10:22 am (CNA/EWTN News).- The annual meeting of Benedict XVI's students from his time at the University of Regensburg will gather next week to discuss “the question of God,” though the former Pope will not be joining them.“Since he is retired, he does not want to attend any more public meetings,” Father Joseph Fessio, founder of Ignatius Press and a member of the group, told CNA Aug. 20.“The circle of students will meet in … [Read more...]

French teens aim to learn extreme poverty during Rome trip

Vatican City, Aug 21, 2013 / 04:05 am (CNA).- A group of French teenagers arrived in Rome this month without money or possessions in the hopes of learning how to let go of material things and grow closer to God.“We've come here without money,” said 17-year-old Marie Lecointe. “It’s taught us to detach ourselves from things like beds, showers...”Lecointe came to Rome on Aug. 19 alongside nine other youths aged 15 to 20. They left Paris on Aug. 3 with barely … [Read more...]

Canonization date of late Popes to be announced in September

Vatican City, Aug 20, 2013 / 03:53 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis plans to hold a consistory Sept. 30 to formally approve the sainthood of Blesseds John Paul II and John XXIII, during which the official date of the canonizations will be announced. Cardinal Angelo Amato, prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, made the announcement during an Aug. 20 interview with Vatican Radio, saying that only Pope Francis knows for sure the date that the canonizations will … [Read more...]

Pope blesses Hungarians on national feast day

Vatican City, Aug 20, 2013 / 11:09 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis sent a message to the president and citizens of Hungary today, praying for the nation as it celebrates the feast of its founder and first king, St. Stephen of Hungary.“I ask God that the Hungarian people might find within themselves, and their human and spiritual heritage, the moral resources necessary in order to build a future of peace and fraternity,” he told president János Áder in an Aug. 20 … [Read more...]

We cannot be part-time Christians, Pope says on Twitter

Vatican City, Aug 19, 2013 / 11:12 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis told his millions of followers on Twitter today that it is impossible for Christians to have a partial or lackluster commitment to the faith.“We cannot be Christians part-time,” he said Aug. 19 on the social networking site, where his popularity is growing fast. “If Christ is at the center of our lives, he is present in all that we do.”Pope Francis was named the world's most influential leader … [Read more...]