Catholic theologian urges closer ties with Russian Orthodox


15 Feb 2017 – By Jonathan Luxmoore OXFORD, England (CNS) — A prominent Catholic ecumenist has urged a better understanding of the Russian Orthodox Church. “Those suspicious of the Russian Orthodox stance should go and see what’s happening,” said Barbara Hallensleben, a consultor with the Vatican’s Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. “Of course, nationalist […]

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Letter #58, 2016: The Bells of Rome, Last Conversations, #4


September 17, 2016, Saturday — The Bells of Rome, Last Conversations #4 “Peter Seewald: When you left the Vatican in a helicopter, this also was part in some way of the entire screenplay, as it were, at least as seen from the outside. One could say that up until that moment no Pope had ascended […]

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Vatican Hosts Conference on Cell Therapies to Heal and Cure Disease

Pope Francis greets U.S. Vice President Joe Biden after both spoke at a conference on adult stem cell research at the Vatican April 29. (CNS photo/L'Osservatore Romano, handout) See POPE-BIDEN-CANCER April 29, 2016.

Pope Francis on April 29 spoke to participants in an International Conference on the Pro­gress of Regenerative Medicine and its Cultural Impact. The Conference was sponsored by the Pontifical Council for Culture, the Stem for Life Foundation, and the STOQ (“Science, Theology and the Ontological Quest”) Foundation. The conference, entitled “Cellular Horizons: How Science, Technology, […]

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One Pope, One Petrine Ministry

Pope Francis greets emeritus Pope Benedict XVI during an encounter for the elderly in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican Sept. 28. (CNS photo/Paul Haring) See POPE-ELDERLY Sept. 29, 2014.

A Response to Archbishop Georg Gänswein’s Recent Remarks on Benedict and Francis On May 20, during the presentation of a new book on Pope Emeritus Benedict and his pontificate, his personal secretary, Archbishop Georg Gänswein, delivered an address at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, that raised many questions and concerns among Catholics. Instead of […]

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Two Years to Reorganize Vatican Communications

Pope Francis uses a tablet to officially open online registration for World Youth Day 2016 in Poland. He did this during the Angelus from the window of his studio overlooking St. Peter's Square at the Vatican July 26. (CNS photo/L'Osservatore Romano via EPA) See POPE-ANGELUS July 27, 2015.

Monsignor Viganò, from January 22, 2013 to December 21, 2015, you were the director of the “Pope’s Television Network,” the CTV (“Centro Televisivo Vaticano”). And on June 27, 2015, you also received quite a 53rd birthday present: your nomination as prefect of the newly-formed Communications Secretariat, with the task of reorganizing the Holy See’s composite […]

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Power Struggle in Vatican City

Cardinal George Pell of Sydney greets Pope Francis during his audience with cardinals March 15 at the Vatican. (CNS photo/L'Osservatore Romano) (April 9, 2013)

A financial battle is raging inside the Vatican. At the center of the conflict is Australian Cardinal George Pell, brought to Rome by Pope Francis to oversee the Vatican’s financial reforms. Now Pell faces tough opposition… Is Cardinal George Pell’s reform of the Vatican’s finances in trouble? It seems so. A headline in a major […]

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Letter #30, 2016: Bernie’s Remarks in Rome

April 15, 2016, Friday — Bernie Sanders’ Talk in Rome Bernie’s Talk at the Vatican… Bernie Sanders: The Urgency of a Moral Economy: Reflections on the 25th Anniversary of Centesimus Annus. Prepared Remarks from April 15, 2016 By Bernie Sanders I am honored to be with you today and was pleased to receive your […]

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Holy Week with Pope Francis

20/03/2016 Saint Peter's Square. Palm Sunday of the Passion of the Lord. At the end of the Palm procession Pope Francis blesses palms and olive branches in front of the Obelisk. Photo Grzegorz Galazka.

The Liturgical Celebrations of Holy Week Unfolded with No Violent Incidents Despite Fears following the March 22 Terrorist Bombings in Brussels  Pope Francis in his Palm Sunday 2016 homily lamented what he termed a lack of concern for the many Middle Eastern and African refugees flooding into Europe, making a comparison to the Roman authorities […]

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The Problem, and the Opportunity, of the Stepinac Case


Croatia’s new prime minister, Tihomir Oreskovic, came to Rome on April 7 to meet with Pope Francis. On the meeting’s agenda, a canonization cause which has led Rome to take an unprecedented step… Tihomir Oreskovic, Croatia’s new prime minister, came to Rome on April 7 to meet with Pope Francis. The subjects of his talks […]

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Letter #20, 2016: Holy Saturday

March 26, 2016, Saturday – Holy Saturday The Silence of the Lord “In the hours of Holy Saturday, a great silence overtakes the Church. Our silence commemorates that God in Christ descended to where no human word is uttered or heard— the silence of the grave. Yet even in that silence God is speaking. “In […]

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Letter #14, 2016: One Less Light in the Vatican


February 28, 2016, Sunday – One Less Light in the Vatican One Less Light in the Vatican And though the last lights off the black West went Oh, morning, at the brown brink eastward, springs— Because the Holy Ghost over the bent World broods with warm breast and with ah! bright wings. —The poem God’s […]

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Pope Francis Will Celebrate a Series of Jubilee of Mercy Events

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The Jubilee Year opened December 8, and continues through November 20, the Feast of Christ the King The Holy See has designated a number of special days throughout the remaining months of the Jubilee Year to be celebrated as jubilees for particular groups, and a few other related events, in all of which the Pope […]

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“Anguish and Tears Must Never Be Forgotten”

17/01/2016 Rome, Italy. Pope Francis' visit to the Great Synagogue of Rome. The Holy Father goes into the synagogue together with Ruth Dureghello, President of the Jewish Community of Rome, and Riccardo Di Segni, Chief Rabbi of the Jewish Community of Rome.

  Pope Francis visited the Jewish synagogue of Rome on January 17. He emphasized the “rich, common spiritual heritage” of Jews and Christians While the Catholic Church affirms that salvation comes through Jesus, it also recognizes that God is faithful and has not revoked his covenant with the Jewish people, Pope Francis said. Interrupted repeatedly […]

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LEV Publishes New Book for Bishops’ Formation Courses


A press conference held at the Holy See Press Office on January 28 presented the book Witnesses of the Resurrected One, published by the Vatican Press (LEV). The book contains the proceedings of the annual formation course for new bishops organized by the Congregation for Bishops. Cardinal Marc Ouellet, P.S.S., prefect of the Congregation for […]

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Italy’s Family Day Draws Huge Suppor­t — But Silence from the Vatican

The dome of St. Peter's Basilica is seen in the distance as people attend the Family Day rally at the Circus Maximus in Rome Jan. 30. The rally was held to oppose a bill in the Italian Senate that would allow civil unions for homosexual and heterosexual couples. (CNS photo/Paul Haring) See story to come.

  In the last country in Europe not to legalize same-sex marriage, ordinary Italians are resisting pressure to recognize homosexual unions. But why the silence from the Vatican? More than a million people (1.5 million according to organizers) took part in a rally called Più Familia (More Family) that was organized by 450 associations to stress the […]

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As He Reaches Out to Russia, Francis Also Reaches Out To China…

Those preparing to become Catholics are recognized by the congregation during a Sunday Mass at St. Ignatius Cathedral in Shanghai, China, in March. Amid chronic tensions between the Vatican and China, there were new signs of hope this year for Catholic believers in the country, especially for those who have been loyal to the Vatican. (CNS photo/Nancy Wiechec) (Dec. 10, 2007) See YEAREND-CHINA Dec. 10, 2007.

…and in Beijing, the gesture is “noted.” The full text of a controversial recent papal interview Pope Francis gave his first-ever interview on China and the Chinese people on January 28 to Asia Times columnist and China Renmin University senior researcher Francesco Sisci, which follows. In the historic one-hour interview at the Vatican the Pope […]

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Letter #55, 2015: A Vatican-Russian Concert


December 17, 2015, Tuesday — A Vatican-Russian Concert There was a remarkable “ecumenical” concert in Rome this evening at 8:30 p.m. in the Apse of the Basilica of St. John Lateran, often called “the Mother and Head of all churches in Rome and in the World” because it is the oldest and ranks first among […]

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New Books Detail Vatican Leaks and Financial Scandals

Francesca Chaouquimons

There may be two sides to accusations of misappropriation  and waste Two books, entitled Avarice by Emiliano Fittipaldi, a journalist with the Italian weekly newspaper L’Espresso, and Way of the Cross by Gianluigi Nuzzi, a panelist on the Italian television talk show Mediaset, both published in early November in Europe, claim to reveal that the […]

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Space is God’s Gift for the “Whole of Humanity”

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  Holy See on the UN’s “Code of Conduct for Outer Space Activities” Statement of Archbishop Bernardito Auza, Apostolic Nuncio, Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations Mr. Chair, As this is the first time my delegation intervenes before this Committee during the current session, I would like to take the opportunity […]

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The Peril of the Pope

Pope Francis has once again mentioned the apocalyptic work by Monsignor Robert Hugh Benson, The Lord of the World (1907). The book describes the coming of the Antichrist. Does Francis believe the Antichrist is… about to arrive? Pope Francis told the journalists traveling with him on his flight back from Asia on January 19 that […]

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