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Vatican

Vatican comments on situation of missing Chinese Bishop Shao Zhumin

June 26, 2017. Bishop Peter Shao Zhumin, from Wenzhou in Continental China, was taken into custody by Chinese police on Easter weekend 2017. While recognized as a bishop in the Catholic Church, he is an unofficial bishop or "underground” in China, since the Chinese government does not recognize him as religious.
Pope Francis

Pope Francis' complete schedule for Colombia trip

June 23, 2017. He will go to Colombia September 6-11.
Vatican

Bruno Marie Duffé, new secretary of the Department for Integral Development

June 16, 2017. Thepope has named French priest Bruno Marie Duffé, from Lyon, number two of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development. He will be in charge of one of the key offices in the Vatican Curia.
Pope Francis

Angela Merkel to meet with pope on June 17

June 9, 2017. The Vatican has confirmed that on Saturday, June 17, German Chancellor Angela Merkel will meet with Pope Francis. Both have previously met in Rome in May 2016, February 2015 and May 2013, two months after Pope Francis was elected pontiff.
Pope Francis

Pope Francis to meet with Venezuelan bishops on June 8

June 5, 2017. Pope Francis will meet with Venezuelan bishops next Thursday to discuss the situation their country is facing.
Vatican

New secretary of the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life

May 31, 2017. The Brazilian priest Alexandre Awi Mello, the National Director of Brazil's Schönstatt Movement, will serve as the new secretary. He was born Rio de Janeiro in 1971, and ordained a priest in 2001.

Jews and Catholics relationship, slowly strengthening

2010-01-18

After John Paul II visited the synagogue in Rome back in 1986, inter religious dialogue hit historic levels. John Paul II was the first pope to walk into a synagogue since the time of the apostles.

Elio Toaff
Chief Emeritus Rabbi (Rome)

“It was very emotional. I never thought he would meet me with open arms. When he hugged me I felt something was changing. I felt as if one chapter was closing and another was starting.”

Riccardo Di Segni
Chief Rabi of Rome

“It was important for the current pope to follow in his predecessors footsteps in order to show it wasn’t just a one time visit, he did it to show that he will continue the dialogue.”

Benedict XVI has continued what his predecessor started and has visited synagogues on two occasions. One in Koln, Germany, the other in New York. He also visited the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem, Jews consider it one of their most sacred places.

But the Jewish community in Rome sees this not only as an opportunity to continue the dialogue John Paul II started, but also to reflect a friendship that needs to be strengthened.

Riccardo Di Segni
Chief Rabi of Rome
“We need to strengthen and reinforce our relationship and respect. And show that both sides are willing to discuss our issues. Issues that can either seperate us or unite us.”

The visit almost didn’t happen after Benedict XVI proclaimed Pius XII “venerable”. The Jewish community in Rome recognizes Pius XII saved the lives of many Jews, but fault him for not condemning the Nazi regime. However, other historians believe if Pius XII would have taken action against Hitler’s regime, more Jews would have lost their lives.

The visit to Rome’s synagogue falls on a special day for the Catholic and Jewish communities of Rome. It’s a holiday celebrated together by both. Jews in Rome recognize the day as the anniversary of a strong storm that was able to miraculously put out a fire in a ghetto in Rome.

Riccardo Di Segni
Chief Rabi of Rome

“When we decided on the date of the pope’s visit, we noticed it coincided with a Jewish holiday in Rome and the Sunday that the Catholic Church in Rome dedicates to relations with the Jews. All these things will make it a very special day.”

A special day, for a historic visit bringing together two of Rome’s largest communities.

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