To welcome the stranger is to welcome Christ, Pope Francis says

Vatican City, Oct 26, 2016 / 05:09 am (Aid to the Church in Need).- When we perform the corporal works of mercy – specifically welcoming the stranger in the form migrants and refugees – we are welcoming Christ in them, and helping to restore their full dignity as humans, Pope Francis said Wednesday.“These works, in fact, make evident that Christians are not tired and lazy in waiting for the final encounter with the Lord, but every day go out, recognizing his face in the many … [Read more...]

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For Pope Francis, God’s kingdom doesn’t grow through organization charts

Vatican City, Oct 25, 2016 / 02:05 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The kingdom of heaven is able to grow when its members are docile to the Holy Spirit – rather than when they focus on structures and organization charts, the Pope said during his homily at Mass on Tuesday.“What is the Kingdom of God?  Well, perhaps the Kingdom of God is a very well-made structure, everything tidy, organization charts all done, everything and the person who does not enter (into this structure) is not in … [Read more...]

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Vatican: Cremated bodies may not be scattered

Vatican City, Oct 25, 2016 / 09:44 am (CNA/EWTN News).- The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith released an instruction Tuesday regarding burial and cremation, reiterating the Church's teaching that cremation, while strongly discouraged, can be permissible under certain restrictions – and that scattering the ashes is forbidden.Ad resurgendum cum Christo, or “To rise with Christ”, published Oct. 25, states that while cremation “is not prohibited” the … [Read more...]

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Pope Francis talks nationwide crisis in meeting with Venezuela’s Maduro

Vatican City, Oct 25, 2016 / 05:34 am (CNA/EWTN News).- On Monday Pope Francis met with Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, head of the country’s socialist regime, at the Vatican to discuss the dire political, social and economic situation of Venezuela and its citizens.“The meeting took place within the framework of the worrisome political, social and economic situation that the country is going through – a situation that is having serious repercussions in the daily lives of … [Read more...]

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A message from Rome on the power of liturgical music

Vatican City, Oct 24, 2016 / 03:17 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Liturgical music has the ability to communicate the love of God – and it's this message that gives it the power to help bring others to Christ, said the choir director of the Diocese of Rome.“I believe music is a powerful tool to evangelize because evangelization is to impart in the heart of man the joy of Christ, the love of Christ,” Msgr. Marco Frisina told CNA Oct. 21.Music is like planting “this seed of … [Read more...]

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As battle for Mosul rages, Pope appeals for an end to violence in Iraq

Vatican City, Oct 23, 2016 / 06:24 am (CNA/EWTN News).- With the Iraqi Army currently embroiled in an effort to liberate Mosul and the Plains of Nineveh from the Islamic State, Pope Francis Sunday offered prayers for an end to violence in the country so it can move forward on the path of hope and reconciliation.“In these dramatic hours, I am close to the people of Iraq, in particular those from the city of Mosul,” the Pope said Oct. 23.“Our hearts are shocked by the heinous … [Read more...]

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Castel Gandolfo, the summer home of Popes, opens to the public

Castel Gandolfo, Italy, Oct 22, 2016 / 12:04 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Used for centuries as a private summer residence for Popes, the Apostolic Palace in Castel Gandolfo has now been opened to the public. Visitors may access rooms where Popes have died and where some 50 babies were born during the Second World War.“Whoever crosses the threshold of the Apostolic Palace of Castel Gandolfo will encounter pure beauty,” Director of the Vatican Museums Antonio Paolucci  said in an Oct. … [Read more...]

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