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Pope Francis embraced a disabled man at a special audience with Paralympics athletes in Paul VI hall Oct. 4 at the Vatican.
October 08, 2014

VATICAN CITY-- Unable to resist telling the world about a personal event that is dear to his heart, Pope Francis said that 70 years ago to the day, he celebrated his first Communion.

"They say that you shouldn't talk about personal things, but I can't resist the...

Byzantine Catholic Archbishop William C. Skurla of Pittsburgh, right, and other bishops attended a Mass celebrated by Pope Francis to open the extraordinary Synod of Bishops on the family in St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican Oct. 5
October 06, 2014

VATICAN CITY -- Pope Francis opened the first working session of an extraordinary Synod of Bishops Oct. 6, urging participants to speak fearlessly and listen humbly during two weeks of discussion of the "pastoral challenges of the family."

Hungarian Cardinal Peter...

Pope Francis greeted Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI during an encounter for the elderly Sept. 28 in St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican.
October 01, 2014

VATICAN CITY -- Everyone has a special gift to offer the whole Church, just make sure it is used to serve everyone and not to puff up one's own pride or to create division, Pope Francis said.

"It is a gift that God has given to someone not because he or she is a...

Pope Francis greeted people during an encounter with the elderly in St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican Sept. 28.
September 29, 2014

VATICAN CITY -- Pope Francis warned against the abandonment and neglect of the elderly, calling it a "hidden euthanasia" rooted in today's "poisonous" culture of disposal and an economic system of greed.

In the presence of his predecessor, Pope Francis also...

Pope Francis embraced Franciscan Father Ernest Simoni during a visit to Tirana, Albania, Sept. 21. Pope Francis wept when he heard the testimony of Father Simoni, 84, who for 28 years was imprisoned, tortured and sentenced to forced labor for refusing to speak out against the Catholic Church as his captors wanted.
September 24, 2014

VATICAN CITY -- People of different religious beliefs can and must live together in peace, Pope Francis said.

The Muslim majority and Christian minorities in Albania cooperate beautifully for the common good and prove to the world that it can be done, he said....

September 22, 2014

VATICAN CITY -- Two weeks before the start of an extraordinary Synod of Bishops on the family, the Vatican announced the formation of a special commission to reform the process of granting marriage annulments.

"The work of the commission will start as soon as...

Pope Francis passed an image of Mother Teresa as he arrives to celebrate Mass in Mother Teresa Square in Tirana, Albania, Sept. 21
September 22, 2014

TIRANA, Albania -- In a world "where an authentic religious spirit is being perverted and where religious differences are being distorted and exploited," Albania is an "aspiring example" to everyone that peaceful coexistence is possible, Pope Francis said during a one-...

Pope Francis prayed at an Austro-Hungarian cemetery for soldiers of World War I in Fogliano di Redipuglia, Italy, Sept. 13. The pope prayed for the fallen of all wars and also celebrated Mass in front of the nearby Redipuglia war memorial, which honors the 100,000 Italian soldiers who died during World War I.
September 17, 2014

VATICAN CITY -- Tuck the Gospel in your pocket and put on your walking shoes to share Christ's love, peace and joy with the world, Pope Francis said.

The Holy Spirit inspires Christians to "overcome every obstacle, to conquer the temptation of being closed up in...

Pope Francis celebrated the marriage rite for 20 couples during a Mass in St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican Sept. 14
September 14, 2014

VATICAN CITY -- Presiding over the wedding of 20 couples in St. Peter's Basilica, Pope Francis celebrated marriage as the union of a man and woman playing complementary roles during their common journey through life.

"This is what marriage is all about: man and...

Pope Francis greeted the crowd as he arrived to lead his general audience in St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican Sept. 3. The pope is preparing for his first international visit in Europe, to Albania, on Sept. 21.
September 10, 2014

VATICAN CITY -- Christians are called to help those who have nothing to give and love those who don't love back, Pope Francis said.

Salvation and changing the world for the better require "doing good to those who aren't able to repay us, just like the Father did...

September 10, 2014

VATICAN CITY -- Pope Francis' choice of Albania as the destination of his first international trip in Europe reflects his trademark pastoral approach: Head to the peripheries, bring healing to the suffering.

But his Sept. 21 visit to the poor, Muslim-majority...

Salvadoran Gerardo Ernesto Mancia, 15, video chatted with Pope Francis in San Salvador's gang-infested neighborhood of La Campanera Sept. 4. The pope said all of society needs to help children and young people who are homeless, exploited, victims of violence or without any prospects.
September 05, 2014

VATICAN CITY -- The wisdom of "It takes a village to raise a child" has been lost as kids are either overprotected by permissive parents or neglected, Pope Francis said.

"The educational partnership has been broken" as families, schools and society are "no longer...

Pope Francis spoke via video link from the Vatican before the start of the first “Interreligious Match for Peace” at the Olympic Stadium in Rome Sept. 1. The match was inspired by a suggestion from Pope Francis. “The match is an occasion for raising funds for solidarity projects, but above all (for promoting) values that draw people together, no matter what their culture or religious creed,” the pope told the participants and organizers earlier in the day, during a private audience at the Vatican.
September 03, 2014

VATICAN CITY -- Iraqi Christians are true and courageous witnesses of Christ's message of hope, forgiveness and love, Pope Francis said.

"The Church suffers with you and is proud of you, proud to have children like you," he said Sept. 3, in a greeting to Arabic-...

September 03, 2014

WASHINGTON -- In the days that followed Pope Francis' Aug. 18 remarks on U.S. airstrikes earlier in the month against Islamic State, the buzz was about whether the pope had actually given his consent to them.

The more sobering post-buzz reality is how one stops...

Pope Francis greeted the crowd as he arrived to lead his general audience in St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican Aug. 27.
August 27, 2014

VATICAN CITY -- Envy, jealousy and meanness are human instincts, but they are not Christian, since the division they cause among believers is the work of the devil, Pope Francis said.

"Instead, God wants us to grow in the ability to come together, forgive each...

August 21, 2014

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis phoned the bereaved family of a U.S. journalist killed by Islamic State militants in Syria.

Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, Vatican spokesman, said the pope phoned relatives of the late James Foley on Aug. 21 to console them for their...

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