Meet the pope’s sister

NCR’s John Allen has arrived in Argentina, and wasted no time tracking down the most important interview subject in the country: the pope’s sister. A snip:  Though there aren’t yet hard numbers to back it up, it’s a good bet that the single most interviewed human being on the planet since March 13, 2013, has [Read More...]

“I always ask God to grant me a meek heart…”

Carol Glatz at CNS has unearthed some fascinating tidbits about the new pontiff, culled from a book of interviews published in Argentina three years ago. (It’s not yet available in English.) To wit: – Favorite dance style: tango, which he said he loves “very much. It’s something that comes from within.” He said he danced [Read More...]

“Women have a special role in opening doors to the Lord”: Pope Francis speaks on women in the Church

Text from the Vatican:  Another element. In the professions of faith of the New Testament, only men are remembered as witnesses of the Resurrection, the Apostles, but not the women. This is because, according to the Jewish Law of the time, women and children were not considered reliable, credible witnesses. In the Gospels, however, women [Read More...]

Why doesn’t the pope sing? Here’s an answer.

From CNS:  Previously, [Vatican spokesman] Father [Federico] Lombardi dispelled rumors that the 76-year-old pope’s singing capacity or current state of health was impaired by an operation he had when he was 21 in which the upper half of his right lung was removed after cysts caused a severe lung infection. More recently, Father Lombardi said [Read More...]

A papal first: Pope Francis tours area near St. Peter’s tomb

Details:  Pope Francis became the first pope to tour the excavated necropolis where St. Peter is buried, said Jesuit Fr. Federico Lombardi, Vatican spokesman. With explanations from the two directors of the necropolis, the pope walked down the central path between the mostly second-century burial chambers April 1, then went up a slight incline toward [Read More...]

Who will be Francis’ #2?

That’s the question on the lips of a lot of Vatican-watchers, including Francis X. Rocca at Catholic News Service:  As he moves beyond words and gestures to the stage of substantive actions, no decision that Pope Francis makes will be of greater consequence for reform of the church’s bureaucracy than his choice of a secretary [Read More...]

Pope Francis: “Without grace, we can do nothing!”

Pope Francis joined pilgrims this morning to pray the Regina Coeli in St. Peter’s Square.  The Vatican’s translation is below. +++ Dear Brothers and Sisters, Happy Easter to you all! Thank you for coming today, in such large numbers, to share the joy of Easter, the central mystery of our faith. Let us pray that [Read More...]

Pope’s message to the world: “Peace to this our Earth!”

Below, the text of Pope Francis’ Urbi et Orbi message for Easter:  Dear brothers and sisters in Rome and throughout the world, Happy Easter! What a joy it is for me to announce this message: Christ is risen! I would like it to go out to every house and every family, especially where the suffering [Read More...]

Vatican defends foot-washing by Pope Francis—UPDATED

Details from AP: The Vatican on Friday (March 29) dismissed criticism of Pope Francis’ decision to wash the feet of two women during a Maundy Thursday Mass at a Rome youth prison. The move has come under fire from Catholic traditionalists who say that the rite is a re-enactment of Jesus washing the feet of [Read More...]

Letters to Pope Francis from prison: “Thank you for washing the feet of youth like us…”

From Vatican Radio:  Los Angeles County has one of the highest youth incarceration rates in the country. Up to 90% of the county’s juvenile justice youth are Latino or African American, and up to 70% of incarcerated youth nationally are said to have some kind of disability. After witnessing the tragic lives of so many [Read More...]