Pope’s upcoming meeting with UN officials presents opportunity

Vatican City, May 7, 2014 / 12:04 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis will meet with United Nations secretary-general Ban Ki-moon May 9, as well as with the Chief Executives Board for Coordination, marking an opportunity for the Pope to encourage reform of the organization. The board coordinates and directs the U.N., and is comprised of 29 heads of U.N. bodies. The meeting comes against the backdrop of a tense hearing of a Holy See delegation before the U.N.’s Committee on the … [Read more...]

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New Swiss Guards swear oath to protect Pope Francis

Vatican City, May 6, 2014 / 11:21 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Thirty young men joined the ranks of the Swiss Guards today, taking an oath of allegiance to Pope Francis and promising to serve the Church by protecting him and all of his successors. Addressing the new guards the day before their traditional swearing-in on May 6, the Pope explained that the event commemorates their predecessors, who “offered their lives to defend the Church.” “Your dedication,” he noted, … [Read more...]

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The Church is more than ‘a university of religion,’ Pope insists

Vatican City, May 6, 2014 / 07:57 am (CNA/EWTN News).- In his daily Mass Pope Francis recounted the death of St. Stephen, the Church’s first martyr, explaining that being a Christian means giving witness rather than remaining sterile within ourselves. “You cannot understand a Christian without witness,” the Pope stated in his May 6 daily homily, adding that “we are not a university of religion, a 'religion' of ideas,” or “of pure theology, beautiful … [Read more...]

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Women conceived in rape seek to inspire others in choosing life

Vatican City, May 6, 2014 / 03:40 am (CNA/EWTN News).- During Italy’s fourth annual March for Life, two women shared testimonies of being conceived in rape, and expressed hope that they can offer light to women who are pregnant through similar circumstances. Speaking of women who become pregnant as a result of rape, Rebecca Keissling and Mary Rathke told CNA May 4 that they wish to “give them hope, and that they wouldn’t feel alone.” The women were present in Rome … [Read more...]

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Pope calls on Church in Sri Lanka to be leaven for reconciliation

Vatican City, May 5, 2014 / 07:38 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- During his ad limina address Saturday, Pope Francis urged the bishops of Sri Lanka to continue their role in reconciliation of the nation, which emerged in 2009 from a 26-year civil war. “Our vocation is to be a ‘leaven in the midst of humanity’,” Pope Francis said May 3. “Sri Lanka particularly needs this leaven.” “After many years of fighting and bloodshed, the war in your country has finally … [Read more...]

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Pope: follow God for pure intentions rather than personal gain

Vatican City, May 5, 2014 / 07:02 am (CNA/EWTN News).- During his daily Mass Pope Francis warned against those who use their faith vainly in order to obtain power or money, and prayed that all might have the grace to follow the Lord out of love. “In the Church there are climbers, people driven by ambition! There are many of them!” the Pope stated in his May 5 daily homily, “But if you like climbing go to the mountains and climb them: it is healthier!” Addressing … [Read more...]

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Francis will not be prisoner to public opinion, analyst says

Vatican City, May 4, 2014 / 06:04 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Vatican observer Sandro Magister has said that Pope Francis’ “formidable praise” for Paul VI’s “Humanae Vitae” is key to understanding his papacy’s alternating emphases of both clear doctrine and pastoral mercy. Magister, writing in his May 1 column at L'Espresso, noted that the renewed controversy over communion for divorced and remarried Catholics has created “formidable … [Read more...]

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