Our servant pope: wearing a deacon stole to wash feet

An alert reader sent these my way: snapshots from Pope Francis this afternoon. A report from Associated Press:  Pope Francis washed the feet of 12 elderly and disabled people Thursday – women and non-Catholics among them – in a pre-Easter ritual designed to show his willingness to serve others like a “slave.” Francis’ decision in [Read More...]

Whose feet will the pope wash? This year’s list includes a Muslim and an Ethiopian woman

From Vatican Radio:  For the second year in a row Pope Francis has chosen to celebrate the Mass of Our Lord’s Supper among people often pushed to the margins of society. He will once again visit the Don Gnocchi centre in Rome’s Casal del Marmo area, close to the Youth Detention Center where the Pope [Read More...]

Can Pope Francis help keep Latin America Catholic?

From Reuters:  Despite a high-profile first year as the head of the Vatican, Pope Francis has not been able to stem the tide of fellow Latin Americans turning away from Catholicism and toward Evangelicalism, or secularism in more prosperous countries. The number of Roman Catholics in Latin America, a historical stronghold, dropped to 67 percent [Read More...]

Obama praises pope at Easter prayer breakfast

From CNS:  President Barack Obama praised Francis during an Easter prayer breakfast at the White House, April 14. In his remarks, the president said he felt the spirit of the hope of the Resurrection and of following Jesus when he met Pope Francis on Mar. 27 at the Vatican. “Those of us of the Christian [Read More...]

John Paul, patron saint of World Youth Day

From Pope Francis’ Angelus yesterday: At the end of this celebration I offer s special greeting to the 250 delegates – bishops, priests, religious and laypeople – who participated in the meeting about World Youth Days that was organized by the Pontifical Council for the Laity. In this begins the journey of preparation for the [Read More...]

The pope poses for a Palm Sunday selfie

Details:  Pope Francis, marking Palm Sunday in a packed St. Peter’s Square, ignored his prepared homily and spoke entirely off-the-cuff in a remarkable departure from practice. Later, he hopped off his popemobile to pose for “selfies” with young people in the crowd. In his homily, Francis called on people, himself included, to look into their [Read More...]

Pope Francis on priest sex abuse: “I feel compelled…to personally ask for forgiveness…”

Strong words this morning: I feel compelled to personally take on all the evil which some priests, quite a few in number, obviously not compared to the number of all the priests, to personally ask for forgiveness for the damage they have done for having sexually abused children. The Church is aware of this damage, [Read More...]

“Papa’s got a brand new bag”

  Photo: Paul Haring/CNS That’s the irresistible headline to this blog post from Tuesday by CNS’s Carol Glatz, describing the perfect gift the Holy Father received over the weekend: Parishioners in Rome gave Pope Francis a brand new black bag in the hopes that it would hold up for many years of traveling and serving [Read More...]

Vatican announces pope’s plans for Holy Thursday

From CNS: Pope Francis will celebrate the Holy Thursday Mass of the Lord’s Supper at a Rome rehabilitation facility for the elderly and people with disabilities. He will preside over the Holy Thursday evening Mass and foot-washing ritual at the Father Carlo Gnocchi Foundation’s Our Lady of Providence Center on the outskirts of Rome, the [Read More...]

Queens street renamed for Pope John Paul II

From the In My Backyard Desk, via the New York Daily News: Years before he donned his papal robes, John Paul II spent time at a Maspeth church with ties to the Polish community. That visit to Holy Cross Church will be honored when 59th Road in Maspeth is co-named “Pope John Paul II Way..” [Read More...]