Over 10,000 youth to send birthday card to Pope Francis

Steubenville, Ohio, Dec 6, 2013 / 02:11 am (CNA/EWTN News).- More than 10,000 young people have signed a giant birthday card for Pope Francis, offering their prayers and well-wishes for the Holy Father’s 77th birthday on Dec. 17. “We wanted to give the Pope a gift he would truly appreciate; something he would be proud of,” said Mark Nelson, founder of Catholic to the Max, the Ohio-based arts and gifts outlet company behind the initiative. The 4-foot-tall card consists of … [Read more...]

Asian bishops encourage biblically-based apostolates

Pattaya, Thailand, Dec 6, 2013 / 12:04 am (CNA/EWTN News).- The Federation of Asian Bishops’ Conferences is hosting a seminar on biblical apostolates and the new evangelization this weekend, drawing clerics, religious, and laity from across the continent. “The main crux is to reawaken the missionary challenge of the Word,” Fr. Jacob Theckanath, executive director of the bishops' conference, told CNA, explaining “Crossing the Borders: Renewed Biblical … [Read more...]

Legion of Christ reaffirms commitment to addressing sex abuse

Rome, Italy, Dec 5, 2013 / 05:31 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The acting general director of the Legion of Christ has shared the steps the order has taken to prevent sexual abuse and to respond to its allegations, focusing on the gravity of abuse and its victims' suffering. “When we confront the reality of sexual abuse, it is helpful to keep certain complementary values in mind: compassion and solidarity with the victims, the responsibility to protect people who are under our pastoral care, … [Read more...]

Amid persecution, Christianity growing in ‘Global South’

Washington D.C., Dec 5, 2013 / 05:10 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Researchers say the Christian population is growing in regions that experience anti-Christian persecution, though this threatens their ability to contribute to societies. “Persecution is growing because Christianity is growing in the places where people are persecuted,” said Todd Johnson of the Center for the Study of Global Christianity at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. Speaking during a Dec. 5 media call, he … [Read more...]

Christian words without Christ bring ‘madness,’ says Pope

Vatican City, Dec 5, 2013 / 02:34 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- In his daily homily on Dec. 5, Pope Francis reflected that the words and actions of a Christian must be centered on Jesus, or they will be empty, leading to division and the “madness of pride.” “A Christian word without Christ at its center leads to vanity, to pride, power for the sake of power,” said the Pontiff during Mass at the Vatican’s Casa Santa Martha. “And the Lord knocks these people down. … [Read more...]

Shipwrecked man survives underwater for three days praying psalms

Lagos, Nigeria, Dec 5, 2013 / 01:02 pm (CNA).- After a shipwreck off the coast of Nigeria, a 29-year-old man survived three days at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean while constantly reciting a psalm his wife mentioned to him during their last conversation. Harrison Okene was a Nigerian cook on the tugboat Jascon 4, which was one of three vessels pulling an oil tanker. It capsized and sank about 32 kilometers off the coast of Nigeria in late May with its 12 crewmembers aboard. Although the … [Read more...]

Vatican launches new commission for the protection of minors

Vatican City, Dec 5, 2013 / 07:34 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Earlier today, Pope Francis accepted a proposal for a new commission which will advise him on the protection of children from abuse, as well as how to offer help to those who are already victims.“Accepting a proposal that has been presented by the Council of Cardinals, the Holy Father has decided to establish a very specific commission for the protection of children,” Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley told journalists in a … [Read more...]


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