‘The right to forget’: sins are left behind in the confessional

Rome, Italy, Nov 17, 2014 / 10:47 am (CNA).- Speaking about the “right to forget” sins after confessing them, a Vatican official stressed that God’s mercy truly frees us from our past sins if we truly repent of them. Cardinal Mauro Piacenza, the head of the Apostolic Penitentiary – a Vatican tribunal dealing with issues involving the forgiveness of sins as well as indulgences – explained that while “it is right to sanction someone who has made a … [Read more...]

It’s official! Pope Francis announces 2015 visit to US

Vatican City, Nov 17, 2014 / 01:11 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Updated November 17, 2014 at 6:25a.m. MST. Adds comments from Vatican spokesman Fr. Federico Lombardi SJ at paragraphs 9-10.Pope Francis on Monday officially announced that he will visit the U.S. in September 2015, including a visit to the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia. “I wish to confirm, if God wills it, that in September of 2015 I will go to Philadelphia for the Eighth World Meeting of Families,” he … [Read more...]

As winter looms, Syrian refugees now fear ‘dire’ shortfalls in aid

Amman, Jordan, Nov 16, 2014 / 04:01 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Refugees who have fled violence in Syria and Iraq may face further significant problems in meeting their basic needs if funding shortfalls for U.N. food and refugee assistance are not met. “If the U.N. cuts assistance we are going to be in a very, very difficult situation. We are frightened. We are barely managing,” Amer Fahd Al Naser, a 38-year-old refugee from Homs, told reporters through a translator Oct. 27. Al Naser, … [Read more...]

Dialogue with immigrants overcomes tensions, Pope says

Vatican City, Nov 16, 2014 / 09:23 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis made an appeal for peace and dialogue with members of immigrant communities in his remarks after the weekly recitation of the Angelus in Saint Peter’s Square on Sunday. The Pope cited recent tensions in Rome between residents and immigrants, which echoed tensions in other European cities. He called on civil institutions at all levels to prioritize this “social emergency” which will continue to degenerate if … [Read more...]

How can you support Christians in the Holy Land? Go there.

Gaza City, Nov 16, 2014 / 06:01 am (CNA/EWTN News).- If you’re looking for a way to support Christians in the Holy Land, consider making a pilgrimage, advises an Italian cardinal who himself recently visited Palestine and Israel. “I believe that we must step up the pilgrimages to the Holy Land,” Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco of Genoa said in a recent interview with the international Catholic charity Aid to the Church in Need. “This is possible and we need not be afraid. … [Read more...]

For one young Catholic, music is an apostolate of beauty

Ann Arbor, Mich., Nov 15, 2014 / 03:46 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- An up-and-coming Catholic musician in Michigan aims to expose listeners to God in the same way she did during her school years – through beauty found in “truly good” forms of art. “My desire with this music and this album is to reach anybody, anywhere and hopefully open their hearts to the reality that transfiguration and transformation is real,” singer/songwriter Alanna-Marie Boudreau told CNA … [Read more...]

Pope Francis blasts abortion, euthanasia as ‘sins against God’

Vatican City, Nov 15, 2014 / 07:53 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis has told a group of Catholic doctors that “playing with life” in ways like abortion and euthanasia is sinful, and he stressed that each human life, no matter the condition, is sacred. “We're are living in a time of experimentation with life. But a bad experiment… (we’re) playing with life,” the Pope told an audience of 4,000 Catholic doctors gathered in the Vatican’s Paul VI … [Read more...]