Nation and World News

Pope announces new cardinals from Mali, Spain, Sweden, Laos, Salvador

The new cardinals, clockwise from top left: Cardinal-designate Anders Arborelius of Stockholm, Cardinal-designate Louis-Marie Ling Mangkhanekhoun, Cardinal-designate Juan Jose Omella of Barcelona, Spain and Cardinal-designate Gregorio Rosa Chavez, auxiliary bishop of San Salvador, El Salvador

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis announced he will create five new cardinals June 28; the new cardinals-designate come from Mali, Spain, Sweden, Laos and El Salvador.

Pope, President Trump speak of hopes for peace

Pope Francis greeted President Donald Trump at a private audience at the Vatican May 24. According to a statement from the Vatican, the two discussed several things, including “an exchange of views” on international affairs and on “the promotion of peace in the world through political negotiation and interreligious dialogue, with particular reference to the situation in the Middle East and the protection of Christian communities.”

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis and U.S. President Donald Trump spent 30 minutes speaking privately in the library of the Apostolic Palace May 24, and as the president left, he told the pope, "I won't forget what you said."

The atmosphere at the beginning was formal and a bit stiff. However, the mood lightened when Pope Francis met the first lady, Melania Trump, and asked if she fed her husband "potica," a traditional cake in Slovenia, her homeland. There were smiles all around.

U.S. urged to be more vigorous in protecting religious freedom globally

WASHINGTON — A U.S. congressman told attendees at a Washington summit on Christian persecution that "more than ever before, vigorous U.S. leadership and diplomacy are needed to address religious freedom violations globally."

"Religious persecution is festering and exploding around the world. What has been unconscionable for decades, centuries, has gotten worse," Rep. Chris Smith, R-New Jersey, said May 12 in remarks at the World Summit in Defense of Persecuted Christians.

Fatima seers become Church’s youngest non-martyred saints

Portuguese shepherd children Lucia dos Santos, center, and her cousins, Jacinta and Francisco Marto, are seen in a file photo taken around the time of the 1917 apparitions of Mary at Fatima.

FATIMA, Portugal — Standing before the Basilica of Our Lady of the Rosary, Pope Francis canonized two shepherd children who saw Mary at Fatima.

"We declare and define Blessed Francisco Marto and Blessed Jacinta Marto as saints," the pope said May 13 as an estimated 500,000 pilgrims applauded.

The relics of the young shepherd children, encased in two thin golden crosses, were placed in front of the famed statue of Our Lady of Fatima, the "lady dressed in white" as the siblings and their cousin described her.

Fatima seers become Church's youngest non-martyred saints

Pope Francis used incense as he venerated a statue of Our Lady of Fatima during the canonization Mass of Sts. Francisco and Jacinta Marto, two of the three Fatima seers, at the Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima in Portugal, May 13. The Mass marked the 100th anniversary of the Fatima Marian apparitions, which began on May 13, 1917.

FATIMA, Portugal -- Standing before the Basilica of Our Lady of the Rosary, Pope Francis canonized two shepherd children who saw Mary at Fatima, but more importantly, he said, they heeded the call to pray for sinners and trust in the Lord.

"We declare and define Blessed Francisco Marto and Blessed Jacinta Marto as saints," the pope said May 13 as hundreds of thousands of pilgrims broke out in applause before he finished speaking.

Pilgrimage to Fatima a time of prayer, encounter, pope says

Pope Francis arrived May 12 at Monte Real air base in Leiria, Portugal. The visit took place around the 100th anniversary of the first Marian apparition in Fatima, Portugal, and includes the canonization of two of the visionaries.

LEIRIA, Portugal -- Pope Francis said his two-day pilgrimage to Fatima would be a time of prayer and encounter with Jesus and Mary.

The visit to the Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima "is a bit special," he told reporters aboard his flight from Rome May 12. "It is a journey of prayer, an encounter with the Lord and the holy Mother of God."

After a three-hour flight, during which Pope Francis greeted each of the 69 journalists traveling with him, the papal plane landed at Monte Real air base, about 25 miles from Fatima.

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