Style and substance: measuring the Francis Effect

As Pope Francis gets ready to create new cardinals—and not long after that, mark his first year anniversary as pope—Huffington Post looks at some of the changes underway in the Church: Perhaps the pope’s most significant decision to date was his choice of 19 Catholic leaders slated to become the newest class of cardinals. Nine out of [Read More...]

Pope Francis calls Internet “a gift from God,” a network “not of wires, but people”

Details from the AP:  The Internet is a “gift from God” that facilitates communication, Pope Francis said in a statement released Thursday, but he warns that the obsessive desire to stay connected can actually isolate people from their friends and family. Francis made the observations in a message about Catholic Church communications, meditating on the [Read More...]

Pope Francis sends tweet to March for Life

I join the March for Life in Washington with my prayers. May God help us respect all life, especially the most vulnerable — Pope Francis (@Pontifex) January 22, 2014 [Read more...]

Adorable: pope blesses lambs

A tradition continues.  Watch below, courtesy Rome Reports: A couple years ago, CNS described some of the history and customs surrounding the blessing, which occurs on the feast of St. Agnes: L’Osservatore Romano, the Vatican newspaper, interviewed Holy Family Sister Hanna Pomnianowska about her convent’s role in the ancient tradition which makes a connection between [Read More...]

WH: Obama to meet Pope Francis in March

Details:  President Obama will meet with Pope Francis on March 27, capping a European trip that will take him to the Netherlands, Belgium, and Italy. “The President looks forward to discussing with Pope Francis their shared commitment to fighting poverty and growing inequality,” said a statement from White House press secretary Jay Carney. During his [Read More...]

Worth a thousand words: Protestants praying over a future pope

With all the controversy that swirled around this image of Cardinal O’Malley, a reader reminded me of the picture below. It surfaced shortly after Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio was elected pope. Description:  On June 19, 2006, the Third Fraternal Encounter of the Renewed Communion of Evangelicals and Catholics was held in Luna Park stadium in Buenos [Read More...]

Men with hats

  Pope Francis conversing with members of the Jewish community of Argentina at the Santa Marta guesthouse today.  (Source). The men shared a kosher lunch. Read the full story here. [Read more...]

I just might have to make this my screen saver

For the full story behind the image, check out what ace CNS photog Paul Haring has to say over at the CNS blog. And kudos to him for giving us another one that’s worth a thousand words. [Read more...]

NY Times: Some in Vatican are “like frustrated teenagers, closing the door and putting their headphones on”

The paper sizes up various headlines of the last few months, and gets some reaction:  To some degree, Francis, 77, is simply bringing in his own team and equipping them to carry out his stated mission of creating a more inclusive and relevant church that is more sensitive to the needs of local parishes and [Read More...]

The pope baptized a baby, and that’s really all we know—UPDATED

Some eyebrows (and some blood pressures) shot up on the news that Pope Francis had baptized a baby yesterday whose parents were reportedly married civilly, but not sacramentally. To wit: Among the baptized – according to the report in the daily “Il Tirreno” – there is also Giulia, caught of a couple married civilly but [Read More...]