Pope prays for upcoming Synod of Bishops

Vatican City, Dec 29, 2013 / 05:26 am (CNA).- In his Angelus address given on the feast of the Holy Family, Pope Francis prayed especially for the approaching Synod of Bishops which will discuss pastoral challenges to the family. “The next Synod of Bishops will address the theme of the family, and the preparatory phase has already begun some time ago. For this reason, today, (on) the feast of the Holy Family, I wish to entrust this synodal work to Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, praying for … [Read more...]

Vatican encourages renewed missionary zeal in Catholic schools

Vatican City, Dec 26, 2013 / 08:02 am (CNA/EWTN News).- A recently released Vatican document is calling for a fresh commitment to Catholic identity within what it calls an increasingly secularized educational system. At a press conference held Dec. 19, Cardinal Zenon Grocholewski, prefect of the Congregation for Catholic Education, said, “the Catholic identity of the school is fundamental.” Noting the many challenges facing Catholic schools, the Cardinal added, “today one … [Read more...]

Peace requires ‘daily commitment,’ says Pope in Christmas message

Vatican City, Dec 25, 2013 / 05:34 am (CNA).- In his Christmas message, Pope Francis prayed for peace throughout the world as a fruit of God`s grace, to be shared by every human person. "True peace is not a balance of opposing forces. It is not a lovely 'façade' which conceals conflicts and divisions. Peace calls for daily commitment, starting from God’s gift, from the grace which he has given us in Jesus Christ," he said on December 25 from the loggia of St. … [Read more...]

Jesus is ‘meaning of life, history,’ Pope preaches on Christmas

Vatican City, Dec 24, 2013 / 04:07 pm (CNA).- Pope Francis’ homily at the vigil mass for Christmas focused on the importance of Jesus’ incarnation as a real and meaningful event. “The grace which was revealed in our world is Jesus, born of the Virgin Mary, true man and true God. He has entered our history; he has shared our journey. He came to free us from darkness and to grant us light,” said the Pope on Dec. 24 at the mass held in St. Peter’s … [Read more...]

Pope: Contemplate St. Joseph’s ‘greatness of soul’

Vatican City, Dec 22, 2013 / 03:48 pm (CNA).- In his Sunday Angelus, Pope Francis reflected on the Christian witness of St. Joseph, who was faithful to God’s call despite impossible circumstances. St. Joseph “was not stubborn in following his own life plans, he did not allow resentment to poison his soul, but he was prepared to make himself disposed to the news that, in a disconcerting way, was presented to him,” said the Pope on Dec. 22. Referring to the gospel story … [Read more...]

Spanish Poor Clares give Pope Francis a hen for Christmas dinner

Vatican City, Dec 22, 2013 / 08:10 am (CNA/EWTN News).- The Poor Clares of Allariz, in western Spain, have given Pope Francis the finest hen from their farm, to be served as the main dish for his Christmas dinner.  “This is not just another hen; it is a poulard, a type of high-quality bird fed a special fodder and bred longer than normal, which gives the meat a more tender and flavorful quality,” Sister Maria Pureza, abbess of St. Clare monastery, told CNA by phone from her … [Read more...]

Spread ‘joy’ of Jesus’ friendship, Pope tells teens

Vatican City, Dec 20, 2013 / 04:04 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis encouraged teens to be living witnesses of their faith in his remarks during an audience with young members of the Italian Catholic Action movement. “Dear young people, Jesus loves you, he wants to be your friend, he wants to be the friend of all young people,” the Pope said Dec. 20. “If you are convinced of this, surely you know to spread the joy of this friendship to all: at home, in the parish, at … [Read more...]


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