Pope Francis: “The whip of Jesus with us is his mercy”

In the Angelus address Sunday, Pope Francis offered this take on Jesus cleansing the temple: In this time of Lent we are preparing for the celebration of Easter, when we will renew the promises of our Baptism. Let us travel in the world as Jesus did, and let us make our whole existence a sign of [Read More...]

50 years ago today: Pope Paul VI celebrates first Mass in the vernacular

Pope Francis will be commemorating that historic event at the place where it happened. And Rome Reports offers some context. See below. Photo from Vatican Radio [Read more...]

John Allen: “Mercy is the spiritual bedrock of this papacy”

Crux has just published the introduction to a new book by John Allen, “The Francis Miracle.” One compelling detail describes the pope’s May 2013 visit to a parish on the northern outskirts of Rome: The pontiff was scheduled to arrive at 9:30 a.m., but the pastor, a balding, amiable Romanian immigrant named Fr. Benoni Ambarus, heard the rotor [Read More...]

Pew Research: Pope’s popularity continues to grow in U.S., with 95% favorable rating among Catholics

From Pew:  Nearly two years after becoming the leader of the Catholic Church, Pope Francis continues to grow more popular among Americans. Fully nine-in-ten U.S. Catholics now say they have a favorable view of Francis, including nearly six-in-ten who have a “very favorable” view. Francis’ favorability rating among U.S. Catholics is comparable to ratings for [Read More...]

Pope Francis: judge yourself

From his homily this morning, via Vatican Radio:  It is easy to judge others, but we can only progress on our Christian journey in life if we are capable of judging ourselves first, said Pope Francis at Monday morning Mass in Casa Santa Marta. The readings of the day focused on the subject of mercy. [Read More...]

Habitat for Humanity to build a Pope Francis House

From The St. Louis Review:  Habitat for Humanity St. Louis will begin building The Pope Francis House next month in the Tiffany Neighborhood in south St. Louis for a family currently living in substandard housing. An anonymous donor sponsored The Pope Francis House with $60,000 gift, seeking to inspire the St. Louis community to raise [Read More...]

Pope Francis declares a new doctor of the Church

From Vatican Radio:  Pope Francis has declared Armenian poet and monk, Saint Gregory of Narek, a Doctor of the Universal Church.  Meeting with Cardinal Angelo Amato, Prefect of the Congregation for the Cause of Saints on Saturday ahead of his departure for Aricca on Lenten retreat, the Pope confirmed the proposal put forward by the [Read More...]

Pope Francis talks to Rome’s priests about liturgy, preaching

From CNS:  The liturgy should help the faithful enter into God’s mystery and to experience the wonder of encountering Christ, Pope Francis told priests of the diocese of Rome. People should feel the wonder and allure “that the apostles felt when they were called, invited. It attracts — wonder attracts — and it lets you [Read More...]

Did a gay rights group actually get “VIP treatment” at the Vatican?—UPDATED

Here’s the report from Reuters:  A prominent American Catholic gay rights group was given VIP treatment for the first time at an audience with Pope Francis on Wednesday, a move members saw as a sign of change in the Roman Catholic Church. “This is a sign of movement that’s due to the Francis effect,” said [Read More...]

VIDEO: Pope offers Mass for slain Copts

From Vatican Radio:  Pope Francis offered Mass Tuesday morning for the repose of the souls of the twenty-one Coptic Christians martyred for their faith in Christ. The Mass was attended by the Pope’s personal secretary, Abuna Yoannis Lahzi Gaid, who is Coptic Catholic. As he prepared to begin Mass in the Santa Marta Chapel, the [Read More...]