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Pope Francis

These are the names of the 17 new cardinals the pope appointed at the consistory

November 19, 2016. 13 of them are under the age of 80, and thus able to vote in a hypothetical conclave, and four of them are non-electors.

Vatican congratulates Trump and hopes his time in office "can truly be fruitful"

November 9, 2016. While speaking to Vatican Radio, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican Secretary of State, congratulated the new president and hoped that his government "can truly be fruitful."

Vatican strongly reacts to episcopal ordinations in China made without pope's permission

November 7, 2016. "In recent weeks, there has been a series of reports regarding some episcopal ordinations conferred without Papal Mandate of priests of the unofficial community of the Catholic Church in Continental China,” explains the Vatican in a letter signed by the Director of the Holy See Press Office, Greg Burke.

Christmas tree lights up Saint Peter's square


This year two children had the honor of flipping the switch that lit this 6 ton Christmas tree. The tree, which stands almost 30 meters tall, was a gift from the Walloon region in Belgium.

Belgium pilgrims including a band travelled to Rome for the ceremony.  A ceremony that was well attended despite the chilly weather.

“When I saw the picture of the Vatican I never expected to see the Christmas tree.”

“When I think of a Christmas Tree I think about a Nativity scene it has a spiritual essence.”

Pope John Paul II started the tradition to have the seasons two greatest symbols stand side by side in the square back in 1982.

Following another tradition, once the tree comes down it will be used to make toys for children the proceeds will go to the poor.

But until then, this tree that comes from a dark forest in Belgium, is now lighting up faces and lifting spirits thousands of miles away from home in St. Peter’s Square.