Pope Francis announces plans to visit Philippines, Sri Lanka

Aboard the papal plane, May 27, 2014 / 05:43 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- On his return flight from the Holy Land, Pope Francis announced that he will visit Sri Lanka and the Philippines in January 2015. “There are two Asian trips planned: one to South Korea and then next January, a two-day trip to Sri Lanka and the Philippines, to the area affected by the tsunami,” Pope Francis said during an in-flight press conference May 26, according to the Italian newspaper La Stampa. Pope Paul VI … [Read more...]

Synod on family will have broad focus, Pope notes

Aboard the papal plane, May 27, 2014 / 05:33 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis has said that the upcoming synod on the family will focus on the “vast” pastoral problems facing families – not specifically Communion for the divorced and remarried. “We know that today the family is facing a crisis, a global crisis, young people don’t want to marry or they live together. I wouldn’t like us to fall into this question: will it be possible for Communion to be … [Read more...]

Sex abuse will not be tolerated, Pope Francis says

Aboard the papal plane, May 27, 2014 / 04:18 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis strongly denounced clerical sex abuse of children, saying that such abuse will not be tolerated and announcing a special Mass for abuse victims, as well as efforts to investigate offenders. “There will be no preferential treatment when it comes to child abuse,” the Pope said, declaring abuse a “very serious problem.” “A zero tolerance approach needs to be adopted with regards to … [Read more...]

Prayer for fallen veterans is part of Church’s mission, bishop says

Washington D.C., May 27, 2014 / 12:37 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Remembering those who have given their lives in the line of duty is part of the Christian call to transform the world in unity with Christ’s death and resurrection, said the U.S. archbishop of military services. “If one’s gaze is fixed on heaven, it is possible to walk the path of the passion and death. The message about resurrection and the return of Jesus is clear and it is a message of hope,” said Archbishop … [Read more...]

Pope Francis most open Pope to Jews in history, rabbi says

Jerusalem, Israel, May 26, 2014 / 10:32 am (CNA/EWTN News).- A Jewish rabbi and historian has lauded Pope Francis’ visit to the tomb of an important Jewish personality, stating that he is the most accommodating Pope history has seen. Pope Francis has taken “certainly the most friendly, proactive, accommodating position of any Pope probably in history” toward the Jewish people, Rabbi Ken Spiro explained to CNA May 26. The fact that the Roman Pontiff has “gone … [Read more...]

Pope Francis recalls birth of Church in Upper Room

Jerusalem, Israel, May 26, 2014 / 09:44 am (CNA/EWTN News).- At the conclusion of his pilgrimage to the Holy Land, Pope Francis focused his homily at Mass on the significance of the Upper Room, held to be the site of the descent of the Holy Spirit upon Jesus' apostles. “It is a great gift that the Lord has given us by bringing us together here in the Upper Room for the celebration of the Eucharist,” said Pope Francis on May 26 in Jerusalem. “Here, where Jesus shared … [Read more...]

At Gethsemane, Pope urges religious to live without fear

Jerusalem, Israel, May 26, 2014 / 08:15 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Religious, priests, and seminarians gathered in the Church near the garden of Gethsemane today to meet with Pope Francis, who urged them to follow Christ with courage. “The Lord in his great goodness and his infinite mercy always takes us by the hand lest we drown in the sea of our fears and anxieties. He is ever at our side, he never abandons us,” the Pope assured those gathered near the site of Jesus' agony in the … [Read more...]