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  • Pope urges prayers for creation Sept. 1

    VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- The World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation should be a time for individuals to examine their lifestyles and the way they impact the environment, Pope Francis said. At the end of his weekly general audience Aug. 26, the pope asked Catholics and "all people of goodwill" to join members of the Orthodox Church in the special day of prayer Sept. 1.

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  • Will the Catholic Church have a growing role in Korean reconciliation?

    Seoul, South Korea, Aug 25, 2015 CNA/EWTN News.- With an increasing number of faithful, the Catholic Church in South Korea may foster a climate of reconciliation and peace, as the nation has reportedly made a deal with North Korea to avoid military escalation after days of fire exchanged between the nations.

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  • What is the devil's favorite sin? An exorcist responds

    Madrid, Spain, Aug 25, 2015 CNA.- Is an exorcist afraid?  What is the devil’s favorite sin? These and other questions were tackled in a recent interview with the Dominican priest, Father Juan José Gallego, an exorcist from the Archdiocese of Barcelona in Catalonia, Spain.

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  • Pope in the pews: Monsignor surprised to have Pope Francis at his Mass

    VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- From the time he was archbishop of Buenos Aires, Argentina, Pope Francis has said special prayers for catechists on the feast of St. Pius X, who wrote a catechism in 1908. Pope Francis celebrated a private Mass in his residence very early on the feast day, Aug. 21, but decided to pray for catechists at the tomb of St. Pius in St. Peter's Basilica.

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  • Coptic Catholics welcome terrorism laws but warn on personal freedoms

    OXFORD, England (CNS) -- Egypt's Catholic Church has welcomed tough new anti-terrorism laws, but warned the military-backed government not to violate personal freedoms. "Recent bomb attacks have shown terrorism is a major problem here, so we really need strong laws to help the police and Interior Ministry combat it," said Father Hani Bakhoum Kiroulos, patriarchal vicar of the Coptic Catholic Church.

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  • Popemobile shipped to U.S. ahead of pope's arrival

    VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- More than a month before Pope Francis was scheduled to arrive in the United States, his ride landed on U.S. shores. "A Jeep Wrangler will be used as the popemobile in the USA (like the one used in Ecuador in July 2015)," the Vatican press office said in a statement Aug. 20.

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  • Vatican Museums' app gathers funds and art fans

    VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- By downloading an app for a smartphone or tablet, members of the public can chat with others about famous works of art in the Vatican Museums, share strategies for dealing with the crowds and choose a work to help restore.

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  • Mary's assumption shows life's aim is to be with God, pope says

    VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Mary's assumption into heaven and, in fact, her entire life show believers the great things that God has in store for them, Pope Francis said. "The 'great things' the Almighty has done for her touch us deeply, speak of our journey through life and remind us of the destination that awaits us: the house of the Father," Pope Francis said Aug. 15, the feast of the Assumption.

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  • Vatican accepting applications from potential 'missionaries of mercy'

    VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Pope Francis is looking for a few good "missionaries of mercy," priests who are known for their preaching and their dedication to hearing confessions and granting absolution. If they have their bishop's or superior's support, priests interested in being one of the special communicators of God's mercy are invited to apply online.

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  • U.S. Embassy in Cuba reopens, ending 54-year diplomatic break

    HAVANA (CNS) -- With Havana Harbor's bright blue waters and a trio of vintage U.S. cars parked along the Malecon framing the scene, Secretary of State John Kerry officially reopened the U.S. Embassy in Cuba Aug. 14, marking the end of more than 54 years of fractured diplomatic relations.

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  • Excommunicated Chinese bishops ordain priests in separate ceremonies

    HONG KONG (CNS) -- Two excommunicated bishops in China have ordained priests in separate ceremonies during the past two months, reported ucanews.com. Catholic leaders expressed concern over the ordinations, saying it was yet another example of the communist government tightening its control over the church.

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  • Pope names Italian Jesuit to succeed bishop killed in Turkey in 2010

    VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- More than five years after the murder of Bishop Luigi Padovese, Pope Francis has named an Italian Jesuit to succeed him as apostolic vicar of Anatolia, Turkey. The pope's nomination of Father Paolo Bizzeti, 67, to be a bishop and apostolic vicar of the church jurisdiction on Turkey's eastern Mediterranean coast was announced by the Vatican Aug. 14.

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  • Sydney Archbishop Debates Princeton's Peter Singer on Euthanasia

    Australia (ZENIT) -- Archbishop of Sydney Anthony Fisher OP said he was very pleased to debate Professor Peter Singer on the subject of euthanasia to a packed Sydney Town Hall August 13. "The debate was civil and probing and before a large audience, mostly of very thoughtful young people who were engaged with all the issues. It exposed some major rifts in our culture with respect to the vulnerable and those who are suffering, to healthcare and the law, and to the responsibilities of freedom," the archbishop said following the Thursday evening debate.

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  • Pope designates Sept. 1 as World Day of Prayer for Care of Creation

    VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Like their Orthodox brothers and sisters, Catholics formally will mark Sept. 1 as the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation, Pope Francis has decided. The day of prayer, the pope said, will give individuals and communities an opportunity to implore God's help in protecting creation and an opportunity to ask God's forgiveness "for sins committed against the world in which we live."

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  • Pope: Celebrations, including Mass, are essential for family life

    VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Families need moments of rest and celebration, time for standing back and recognizing the gifts of God and how well they have developed, Pope Francis said. Celebrations are times "to enjoy that which cannot be produced or consumed, that cannot be bought or sold," the pope said Aug. 12 at his weekly general audience.

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  • ANALYSIS: Latest Population Forecasts

    Vatican City (ZENIT) -- The United Nations has recently released its forecast for the growth in world population for the period 2015-2100. Published by the Population Division of the U.N.'s Department of Economic and Social Affairs the 2015 revision of World Population Prospects contains different variants according to what the future fertility rates may be.

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  • Dozens of Christians feared to be among 230 kidnapped in Syria

    AMMAN, Jordan (CNS) -- Dozens of Christians are feared to be among the 230 people abducted by Islamic State after the extremist group's militants captured a central Syrian town in early August. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and Syria-based activist Bebars al-Talawy said they have no information where militants took their captives after overrunning the heavily populated town of Qaryatain. Al-Talawy put the number of Christians abducted at 60.

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  • Will Pope Francis visit Kenya in November?

    Vatican City (CNA/EWTN News) -- Uganda, Central African Republic ... and Kenya? There are no details yet for Pope Francis' trip to Africa this November, but Kenyan media have announced that a Vatican delegation is expected next week to prepare for the pope's arrival.

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  • In message to Iraqi refugees, pope condemns world's silence

    N CITY (CNS) -- The world continues to be silent in the face of widespread persecution of Christians and other religious minorities, Pope Francis said. One year after Islamic State militants drove thousands of Iraqi Christians and Yezidis out of the country, Pope Francis prayed that people around the world would be more attentive and sensitive to the reality of religious persecution and that "the international community would not stand by mute and unresponsive before such unacceptable crimes."

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  • Missionaries of Charity care for the dying in Nepal's holiest temple

    KATHMANDU, Nepal (CNS) -- Every Saturday morning businessman Rajan Silwal rushes to the Pashupatinath temple in Kathmandu to see a few friends. Since 2011, when a friend told him about the "wonderful service" the Missionaries of Charity sisters were offering to the dying elderly residents in a government-run center at the temple, Silwal has hardly missed a Saturday morning visit to Nepal's holiest Hindu temple, on the bank of the Bagmati River.

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  • Polish bishop suggests World Youth Day 2016 should be 'open to all'

    , Poland (CNS) -- The Polish bishop overseeing preparations for World Youth Day 2016 has urged priests to ensure that no young people are excluded because of poverty. Auxiliary Bishop Damian Muskus of Krakow, Poland, which is hosting the international celebration, said arranging for young people who might not be able to attend the event would be "our priestly gifts for youngsters in this Year of Mercy."

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  • Don't be afraid or ashamed to go to confession, pope says

    N CITY (CNS) -- Trusting in God's infinite mercy, people should not be afraid or embarrassed to go to confession, Pope Francis said. "There are people who are afraid to go to confession, forgetting that they will not encounter a severe judge there, but the immensely merciful Father," Pope Francis told thousands of people gathered in St. Peter's Square Aug. 2 for the midday recitation of the Angelus prayer.

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  • CRS strengthens civil society groups in fractured Lebanon

    BEIRUT (CNS) -- When Samar Shalhoub and some friends wanted to better protect children in Lebanon from abuse and violence, they turned their dream into a nonprofit organization. They registered with the government and got to work holding workshops on bullying and ways that children could protect themselves against abduction, sexual abuse and violence. But, Shalhoub readily admits, they knew little about how to organize their organization.

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  • World Youth Day registration begins; pope is first person to sign up

    VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Pope Francis was the first pilgrim to sign up for World Youth Day to be held in Krakow, Poland, launching the opening of registration. Accompanied by two Polish teenagers who wore World Youth Day 2016 t-shirts, the pope had to make a couple of attempts pressing the screen of a tablet before his online registration went through.

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  • Overtime, overhauls and the ordinary: 2013 goes down in Vatican history

    VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- When the Vatican publishes its annual report detailing its activities and operations, the 1,400-page volume is filled with references to the every day and the exceptional. Each Vatican congregation, council, office and organization creates a summary of its ongoing projects, original publications, new equipment and technology, and major renovations in the "Attivita della Santa Sede" ("The Activity of the Holy See").

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