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Pope Francis

Complete program of pope's trip to Fatima on May 12-13

March 20, 2017. The Vatican has published Pope Francis' program for his upcoming trip to Fatima.
Pope Francis

Pope Francis will travel to Egypt from 28 to 29 April 2017

March 18, 2017. In response to the invitation from the President of the Republic, the Bishops of the Catholic Church, His Holiness Pope Tawadros II and the Grand Imam of the Mosque of Al Azhar, Sheikh Ahmed Mohamed el-Tayyib, Pope Francis will make an Apostolic trip to the Arab Republic of Egypt from 28 to 29 April 2017, visiting the city of Cairo. The programme of the trip will be published shortly.
Pope Francis

Pope to meet with most powerful European leaders on March 24

March 3, 2017. On March 24 a historic meeting will take place between the pope and many of the most powerful heads of government throughout Europe. The meeting was announced by the Director of the Press Office of the Holy See, Greg Burke and will begin at 6 p.m. in the Sala Regia of the Apostolic Palace in the Vatican.

South Sudan: Building a Country from Scratch

2012-06-25

SR. PAT MURRAY
Executive Director, Solidarity with So
uth Sudan
"I'd never seen such a thing like the absence of resources and the absence of infrastructure in particular. At that stage, there were 50 miles of paved road in Sudan, in a country with the same area as France and Germany combined.”


The challenges in South Sudan are immense. Roughly 85 percent of the population is illiterate. Less than 10 percent of its teachers are trained. For the most part, the population has lived in the shadows of wars and conflicts.

That's where groups like 'Solidarity of South Sudan' come in. It includes a religious congregations of women and men who work directly with communities in need in South Sudan.

In addition to helping out with education and health programs, they also promote reconciliation among ethnic groups and tribes.

SR. PAT MURRAY
Executive Director, Solidarity with South Sudan

"In a way you can't force reconciliation. Reconciliation is a gift that you give to another person, so in a sense the victim has within his or her power the gift of being reconciled with another.”


Even though these challenges may seem overwhelming at times, Sister Murray says she finds strength in her Catholic Faith. Part of her motivation, comes from the parable of the mustard seed.

SR. PAT MURRAY
Executive Director, Solidarity with South Sudan

"I think of the message of the mustard seed that the mustard seed grew into an enormous tree and no one even noticed. So, I focus on the mustard seeds that are growing, during teachers training or training nurses, or community leaders or farmers. You see all these are mustard seeds that will flourish and grow  and we will be amazed at this new country which is South Sudan.”


It'not an easy task, but she says seeing progress, even if slow,  makes it all worth it.

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