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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.

Blessed Brother Andrè, to become first male Canadian saint and first saint from Congregation of Holy Cross


They are members of the Congregation of Holy Cross, a Catholic order founded in 1837. The order has 1,500 members, half are priests and the other half brothers.

In this hallway inside the generalate, are pictures of members who are on their way to canonization.

And this statue is of their first member who will become a saint. His name is Blessed Brother Andrè Bessette.

Brother John Paige
Vicar General, Congregation of Holy Cross

“It’s wonderful to have our first saint and he was also our first member beatified. So it’s very important for Holy Cross, but it’s also very important for the Church in Canada.”

Blessed Brother Andrè will become Canada’s first male saint.

He was born in a poor family on August 9 in 1854 near Montreal. Without a formal education, he was barely able to read or write.

Brother John Paige
Vicar General, Congregation of Holy Cross
“So it’s kind of amazing that one who the world would consider quite inadequate, poor health, no education, very poor, quite disadvantaged, would in fact have this gift of prayer which was recognized by his parish priest and then that was the recommendation for keeping him as a member of our congregation.”

He joined the Congregation of Holy Cross in 1874. While serving as a porter at a university in Montreal he began healing the sick and earned the name ‘Miracle Man of Montreal.’

Father Cleary heard a first hand account of a miraculous healing. A professor told him, that when he was a young boy, his newborn sister had a brain tumor.

Father Hugh Cleary
Superior General, Congregation of Holy Cross

“There was no medical hope for her so his mother brought her up to visit Brother Andre. He simply put his hand on the infant’s head and said she would be alright and that was all. Sure enough the tumor disappeared, almost immediately.”

In 1982, Blessed Brother Andrè was beatified by Pope John Paul II. He will be proclaimed a saint on October 17.

Both Father Cleary and Brother Paige are making special plans for the celebration. Father Cleary will return to Rome for the special day and Brother Paige will celebrate in Montreal where there will be a celebration with fireworks and a concert.

In the meantime, reminders of Blessed Brother Andrè’s compassion and faith fill their Holy Cross generalate in Rome. Blessed Brother Andrè, a man of simple means with a gift of healing and prayer.