Pope Francis calls Benedict XVI the ultimate ‘grandfather’

Vatican City, Sep 28, 2014 / 10:10 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Retired pontiff Benedict XVI joined some 50,000 pilgrims in Saint Peter's Square on Sunday, Sept. 28 for a meeting between Pope Francis and elderly people from around the world. Welcoming his predecessor, the Holy Father described Pope Benedict as the “grandfather of all grandfathers.” “I have said many times that it gives me great pleasure that he lives here in the Vatican, because it is like having a wise … [Read more...]

Future depends on encounter between young and old, Pope says

Vatican City, Sep 28, 2014 / 09:27 am (CNA/EWTN News).- There is no future without the encounter between generations, Pope Francis said –  addressing the tens of thousands of grandparents and elderly men and women gathered for Mass in Saint Peter's Square.The Sept. 28 Mass followed an international encounter with the Holy Father and the elderly earlier in the morning.  Pope Francis opened his homily with a reflection on the Gospel reading in which Mary was greeted by … [Read more...]

Ariz. town urged to stop discriminating against houses of worship

Phoenix, Ariz., Sep 28, 2014 / 06:02 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Local government restrictions in Gilbert, Arizona are threatening the protection of religious speech by limiting signs promoting houses of worship while allowing political, ideological, and noncommercial signs to stand without the same restriction. “Religious speech enjoys full protection under the First Amendment,” noted Eric Rassbach, Deputy General Counsel for the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, saying in a September … [Read more...]

Buddhist composes symphony to mark Pope’s Sri Lanka visit

Colombo, Sri Lanka, Sep 27, 2014 / 04:01 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- In an effort for religious reconciliation, the Sri Lankan government has commissioned  a symphony from a Buddhist composer to commemorate Pope Francis' voyage to the nation which will take place in January. Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith of Colombo presided over a Sept. 17 performance of the Soul of Christ Symphony, composed and directed by the nation's renowed composer Vajira Indika Karunasena, who is a … [Read more...]

Pope encourages Ghana bishops in Ebola aid, evangelization efforts

Vatican City, Sep 27, 2014 / 06:48 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Personal conversion is the key to the work and fruits of the Church, Pope Francis told bishops visiting Rome from Ghana, particularly noting the Church’s healthcare apostolate, due to the Ebola outbreak in several nearby countries. “From the grace of Christ experienced in our own converted hearts comes the spiritual strength which helps us promote virtue and holiness in our priests, men and women religious, and laity,” … [Read more...]

Blessed Opus Dei bishop ‘knew how to serve’

Rome, Italy, Sep 26, 2014 / 06:02 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Ahead of the Sept. 27 beatification of Bishop Alvaro del Portillo, the current head of Opus Dei recalled his predecessor as a man who was “totally available” to others and saw the importance of the laity to the Church. “He knew how to be very human when treating people, in the work that he did, knowing that his work was also a springboard, an aid to approach God and to be with God,” Bishop Javier Echevarria … [Read more...]

Paraguayan bishop obedient, but has grievance over removal

Ciudad del Este, Paraguay, Sep 26, 2014 / 03:44 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Bishop Rogelio Livieres Plano has accepted in obedience Pope Francis’ decision to remove him from governance of the Ciudad del Este diocese, though he says the action resulted from a flawed apostolic visitation and that his country is in vital need of Christian renewal. “As an obedient son of the Church, I nevertheless accept this decision, despite considering it to be unfounded and arbitrary,” Bishop … [Read more...]


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