Pope Francis: Peace in Korea benefits entire world

Seoul, South Korea, Aug 14, 2014 / 02:18 am (CNA/EWTN News).- In his first public address after arriving in South Korea, Pope Francis called government officials to work for an authentic and far-reaching peace, which requires forgiveness and cooperation. “Peace is not simply the absence of war, but ‘the work of justice,’” the pontiff said Aug. 14, alluding to the words of the prophet Isaiah. “And justice, as a virtue, calls for the discipline of forbearance; … [Read more...]

Italian bishops call on faithful to pray for Iraqi Christians

Rome, Italy, Aug 14, 2014 / 12:04 am (CNA/EWTN News).- As the plight of Christians and other religious minorities intensifies under the spread of the Islamic State, Italian charities and dioceses are putting into action a series of initiatives to help displaced Iraqis. The Italian bishops have designated Aug. 15 as a special day of prayer for the persecuted Christians in the world. In calling the day of prayer, the Italian bishops stressed that they “cannot remain silent” in … [Read more...]

Korea joyfully awaits Pope’s arrival, charity’s local branch head says

Seoul, South Korea, Aug 13, 2014 / 06:55 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- South Koreans are full of joyful anticipation at the impending arrival of Pope Francis, according to the director of the nation's new branch of Aid to the Church in Need. The Pope's flight from Rome is set to land at Seoul Air Base at 10:30 am local time on Aug. 14 – 9:30 pm on Aug. 13 in Washington, D.C. “The whole country is looking forward to the visit of the Holy Father and is thoroughly well prepared for … [Read more...]

Vatican diplomacy focuses on humanitarian intervention in Iraq

Vatican City, Aug 13, 2014 / 05:21 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The persecution of Christians and other religious minorities in Iraq and Syria by the Islamic State has pushed Vatican diplomacy to add strong calls for international humanitarian intervention to its prayers for the situation. The past week has seen the appointment of a papal enjoy to Iraq, a strongly worded open letter from the Vatican's dicastery for interrreligious dialogue, and an urgent appeal from Pope Francis himself to the … [Read more...]

Hundreds attend interreligious prayer for peace in Denver

Denver, Colo., Aug 13, 2014 / 05:02 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- An estimated 900 people of the three Abrahamic religions packed the Cathedral Basilica of the Immaculate Conception in downtown Denver Monday night for an interreligious prayer service for those suffering in the Middle East. Archbishop Samuel Aquila hosted the Aug. 11 event together with the ecumenical and interfaith office of the Maronite Eparchy of Our Lady of Lebanon of Los Angeles, in response to the murder and persecution of … [Read more...]

Korea trip fulfills the dream of the seminarian Jorge Bergoglio

Seoul, South Korea, Aug 13, 2014 / 03:18 pm (CNA).- As a young man and a Jesuit still in formation, Jorge Bergoglio longed to become a missionary in the Far East, like St. Francis Xavier and so many of his confreres in the Society of Jesus. Pope Francis revealed this himself June 7, 2013, during a meeting with some 8,000 students of Jesuit schools in Italy and Albania. “What I liked about the Society is its missionary outreach and I wanted to be a missionary,” he said in … [Read more...]

En route to Korea, Pope prays for journalists killed in Gaza

Aboard the papal plane, Aug 13, 2014 / 12:23 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Aboard the papal flight to South Korea today, Pope Francis led an impromptu moment of silence to pray for a photojournalist who was killed in Gaza, and thanked journalists for their work. Simone Camilli, a 35-year-old Italian working for the Associated Press, and his freelance Palestinian translator, Ali Shehda Abu Afash, died Aug. 13 along with four Gazan bomb disposal offficers who were trying to dismantle an Israeli … [Read more...]