Pope Francis confirms strong stance against clerical abuse

Vatican City, Apr 5, 2013 / 06:49 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis has reaffirmed the Vatican process established by Benedict XVI for handling instances of sexual abuse by priests. The Pope told Archbishop Gerhard L. Müller, who heads the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and is responsible for abuse cases, to “continue the line desired by Benedict XVI of decisive action regarding cases of sexual abuse,” according to an April 5 statement from the congregation. He … [Read more...]

Pope reflects on wonder as invitation to know God

Vatican City, Apr 4, 2013 / 12:14 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Awe and wonder at an encounter with Christ are the first steps in deepening a spiritual life that leads to ultimate peace in the Lord, said Pope Francis at a Vatican Mass.“First wonder, then spiritual consolation and finally, the last step, peace,” said Pope Francis, adding that “even in the most painful tests, a Christian never loses the peace and presence of Jesus.”“Wonder is a great grace, the grace … [Read more...]

Story of Pope’s desire to visit Sicily emerges

Rome, Italy, Apr 4, 2013 / 05:05 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Some might call it fate, but through a series of providential connections, Bishop Michele Pennisi discovered that Pope Francis wants to visit Sicily “as soon as possible.” The story begins with Father Pasquale Di Dio waiting for Pope Francis outside the Vatican parish of Sant’Anna on March 17, standing next to an Argentinian priest. “The Pope,” Fr. Di Dio related in an April 2 interview with CNA, … [Read more...]

Pope Francis asks for ‘gift of tears’ to see Risen Christ

Vatican City, Apr 3, 2013 / 12:00 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- During his brief homily at an April 2 Mass at the chapel of St. Marta’s Residence, Pope Francis encouraged the faithful to pray to God for the gift of tears, to imitate Mary Magdalene during this Easter season. Addressing various members of the Vatican gendarmerie and other Vatican workers present for the Mass, the Holy Father mediated on the passage about the “sinful” woman who wept upon seeing the empty … [Read more...]

Pope Francis to visit Rome’s basilicas before Pentecost

Vatican City, Apr 3, 2013 / 10:45 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis will be praying or celebrating Mass at all four of Rome’s major basilicas between now and Pentecost, as well as holding four public Masses in St. Peter’s Square.The Holy See’s press office released on April 3 the places and times the pontiff will be presiding over the seven public Masses that will be held between now and May 19.After he was elected Pope in 2005, Benedict XVI ordained priests for the Rome … [Read more...]

Women communicate God’s look of love, Pope says

Vatican City, Apr 3, 2013 / 08:23 am (CNA/EWTN News).- During his second Wednesday general audience, Pope Francis said that women’s main role in the Church is to communicate God’s love. “Women have had and still have a special role in opening doors to the Lord, in following him and communicating his face, because the eyes of faith always need the simple and profound look of love,” he said April 3 in Saint Peter’s Square. “This is beautiful, and this is … [Read more...]

Pope Francis prays at John Paul II’s tomb on anniversary

Vatican City, Apr 3, 2013 / 03:30 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis spent a “long time” kneeling in silent prayer before the tomb of Blessed John Paul II on April 2, the eighth anniversary of his death. The visit “this evening in the Vatican basilica expresses the deep, spiritual continuity of the Petrine ministry shared by the Popes.  “It is precisely this Petrine ministry that Pope Francis so deeply feels and shares, and which he has also shown in his meeting … [Read more...]