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Pope Francis

Pope to award 2016 Ratzinger Prize to Inos Biffi and Ioannis Kourempeles

October 20, 2016. The winners of this year's Ratzinger Prize will be Inos Biffi and Ioannis Kourempeles. The former, an Italian priest, is an expert in Systematic Theology and History of Medieval Theology. The latter is Greek and an Orthodox. He is an expert in History of Dogmas and Dogmatic Theology. He will be the first Orthodox to be awarded the prize given by the Joseph Ratzinger Foundation, considered by many the Nobel Prize of Theology.
Pope Francis

Pope Francis sends his condolences to Thais after the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej

October 14, 2016. Pope Francis has sent a message to the Prime Minister of Thailand to express his condolences for the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej. He was 88 years old, and his reign spanned seven decades. Pope Francis said he is "deeply saddened” and he expresses his closeness to the members of the royal family and the Thai people.
Pope Francis

Pope sends 100,000 dollars for Hurricane Matthew victims

October 14, 2016. Through the Pontifical Council "Cor Unum", Pope Francis will send $100,000 to the victims of Hurricane Matthew in Haiti. The money will fund relief efforts in the first stages of recovery after the devastating effects of the hurricane. With this gesture, the pope wants to express his "closeness of spirit and fatherly support” to everyone in the affected area.
Pope Francis

Pope authorizes new decrees of heroic virtues for four potential saints

October 11, 2016. Pope Francis authorized the Congregation for the Causes of Saints to promulgate the decree of heroic virtues to four people, who are being investigated by the Church for possible sainthood. The decrees were given to the following "Servants of God:”
Pope Francis

Pope Francis rejects death penalty on Twitter: #NoDeathPenalty

October 10, 2016. The Pope has has given his support via Twitter to the World Day Against the Death Penalty. The following message can be read in each of his nine accounts, in their respective languages: "Punishment should necessarily include hope! #NoDeathPenalty.”
Pope Francis

Pope Francis announces Synod about youth and vocation

October 6, 2016. It will be held in 2018 under the name "Youth, faith, and vocational discernment.” Preparations for the second Synod of bishops convened by Pope Francis are well underway.

Theme chosen for 2017 World Communications Day

September 29, 2016. The theme for the 2017 World Communications Day has officially been announced. Coming from the book of Isiah, the theme is: "Fear not, for I am with you: communicating hope and trust in our time.”
Pope Francis

Pope will not be able to travel to Israel on Friday to attend the funeral of Shimon Peres

September 28, 2016. Despite the rumors that Pope Francis will travel to Israel to attend Shimon Peres funeral, the Vatican has issued a statement officially announcing a confirmation for the pope's scheduled visit to Georgia and Azerbaijan will remain as planned on Friday. The pope spoke warmly about the former leader and sent out a telegram of condolences:
Pope Francis

Pope's schedule during his trip to Sweden

September 27, 2016. Pope Francis will travel to Sweden next October 31 and November 1, for the occasion of the Lutheran–Catholic Common Commemoration of the Reformation.This will be the 17th trip of his pontificate.

Third priest found dead in Mexico

September 26, 2016.Mexican priest, Alfredo Lopez Guillen, was found dead this weekend on a rural road about 350 km east of Mexico City, after being allegedly abducted and assaulted in his parish on Monday September 19. This is the third case of violence against priests in Mexico in just one week. On Monday, September 19, Fr. Nabor Jiménez and Fr. José Alfredo Juarez were also kidnapped in the church of Our Lady of Fatima. Hours later they found them lifeless in a ditch in Poza Rica, Veracruz. The Catholic Church wants clarification on the murders, because it is not yet known who could be the alleged perpetrators.
Pope Francis

Holy See adopts UN Convention against Corruption

September 23, 2016. Pope Francis has asked the Vatican to be exemplary in the fight against corruption and meet the set international standards in this regard. Therefore, the Secretary of State has announced that the Holy See will conform to the Merida Convention against Corruption. This requires countries to implement anti-corruption measures concerning its laws, institutions and practices. From now on, the Roman Curia and the Vatican City State will review its administrative procedures to align them to the standards set by the Convention. Through this compliance, the Vatican says it hopes to contribute to increased transparency and proper management of public affairs in the international community.

Pope publishes third encyclical, 'Caritas in veritate'


After two and a half years of work, Benedict XVI has published his third encyclical. In it, he asks that human beings return to the center of state and business interests.

It’s called Caritas in Veritate or Charity in Truth, and it follows Catholic doctrine on social topics like globalization, the economic crisis, and environmental issues.

Benedict XVI asks that the economic model of the west take into account justice and the common good, not just the monetary benefits.

Stefano Zamagni
Economist, University of Bologna (Italia)
"The encyclical sees capitalism in its historic dimension and suggests going beyond it. It highlights the intrinsic limits of capitalism, whose goal is to obtain the greatest possible benefit, and suggests that all society have this goal too".

Card. Renato Martino
President, Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace
"The whole encyclical talks about ethics. Not only ethics in finances but in all actions by those responsible, because the world cannot be governed without moral principles".

With the title “Charity in Truth,” the pope warns of the dangers of a solidarity that’s merely sentimental, that does not take into account the real needs of people. For example, helping the poor, is helping them to not depend on the stronger one.

Stefano Zamagni
Economist, University of Bologna (Italy)

"If we eliminate debt but don’t fix the structures that produced the debt, then the problems will not go away".

Throughout the encyclical he defends workers rights and the liberty of unions, criticizes the rigidity of intellectual property laws on health patents, and encourages people to take part in the political process.

He asks everyone, from businesses owners to government officials, to make decisions with the common good of all people in mind. For example, he explains that any measure taken that violates the dignity of women, the family, or the unborn is not authentic progress.

He also criticized the politics of demographic control, especially in those countries that impose abortion or sterilization, and denounces organizations that only help countries that restrict or control family planning.

Among the 78 points of the encyclical the pope discusses a variety of topics like ecology, opportunity for work, and healthcare.

Benedict XVI
"Now we must study and go deeper into it".

The pope does not suggest concrete measures to end the economic crisis. He’d rather give general points to be used as guidelines.

It’s a call to the responsibility of each person to guide the progress of humanity.