Pope calls victims to be ‘prophetic voices’ against nuclear war

Vatican City, Dec 10, 2014 / 10:44 am (CNA/EWTN News).- In a message to an international gathering on the impact of nuclear weapons, Pope Francis called on victims to be “prophetic voices” against the potential for destruction of persons and the planet. These victims, he said, “warn us not to commit the same irreparable mistakes which have devastated populations and creation.” The Pope's letter was addressed to Sebastian Kurz, Austrian foreign minister and … [Read more...]

Family synod gets down to basics of marriage, Pope says

Vatican City, Dec 10, 2014 / 08:26 am (CNA/EWTN News).- In his weekly general audience Pope Francis started a new catechesis on the family, and explained that discussion surrounding the topic in the synod of bishops is rooted in the fundamental truths of marriage. “Dear Brothers and Sisters, this morning we begin a new series of catechesis devoted to the family,” the Pope told pilgrims gathered in St. Peter’s Square for his Dec. 10 general audience. He recalled how the … [Read more...]

Synod document asks how can we improve pastoral care to families

Vatican City, Dec 10, 2014 / 02:04 am (CNA/EWTN News).- The Synod of Bishops announced Tuesday it had released its prepatory document for the 2015 Synod on the Family, asking that bishops avoid formulating pastoral care merely in terms based on doctrine. The Dec. 9 document, known as a “lineamenta”, is composed of the concluding report from the 2014 synod, as well as a series of 46 questions to be delivered to bishops conferences, Eastern Catholic synods, religious superiors, and … [Read more...]

Former Vatican librarian, a friend of Pope Francis, dies at 91

Vatican City, Dec 10, 2014 / 12:01 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Cardinal Jorge Maria Mejìa, a former prefect of the Vatican Apostolic Library and a longtime friend of Pope Francis, died on Tuesday Dec. 9. The Pope had been visiting the cardinal since the very first days of his pontificate and had administered the Anointing of the Sick three times. Cardinal Mejìa was born in Buenos Aires on Jan. 31, 1923. Ordained a priest in 1945, he finished his studies at the Angelicum, the … [Read more...]

What makes the Church happy? Seeking lost sheep, Pope says

Vatican City, Dec 9, 2014 / 03:29 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Like a shepherd finding lost sheep, the Church is a joyful mother who goes out and seeks her lost children, inviting them to consolation of the tenderness of Jesus, said Pope Francis in his daily homily Tuesday. “The joy of the Church is to give birth; the joy of the Church is to go out of herself to give life; the joy of the Church is go out and seek the sheep that are lost; the joy of the Church is precisely the tenderness of the … [Read more...]

The request of a retired pope – simply call me ‘Father Benedict’

Vatican City, Dec 9, 2014 / 01:08 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Rather than being called by his papal name “Benedict XVI,” the retired pontiff revealed that since his retirement he has wanted to return to his original priestly title and be called simply “Father Benedict.” Father Benedict made his comments in a private conversation with journalist Jorg Bremer, who published bits of them in a Dec. 7 article for German newspaper F.A.Z. According to the journalist, Benedict … [Read more...]

Will a host of pontifical councils be merged into two congregations?

Vatican City, Dec 9, 2014 / 12:01 am (CNA/EWTN News).- The establishment of two large congregations, to include many tasks formerly divided among several pontifical councils, is expected to be discussed in the meeting of the Council of Cardinals scheduled for Dec. 9-11. The draft of reform was presented to the chiefs of dicasteries in the last of the periodic meetings they have with Pope Francis, which took place Nov. 24. The draft includes the establishment of two congregations: a … [Read more...]