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Holy See confirms investigation of Order of Malta

January 17, 2017. The Holy See has issued a statement Tuesday in response to "attempts by the Order of Malta to discredit” the new group established by the Vatican to conduct the investigation of why the Chancellor of the Order of Malta was asked to step down.

Pope sends condolences for victims of Turkish cargo jet crash

January 16, 2017. On Monday morning, a Turkish cargo plane has tragically crashed in Kyrgyzstan, killing dozens and hospitalizing many others. Many homes and vehicles in the small village are also destroyed. As a result, Vatican Secretary of State, Pietro Parolin has sent a message of condolences to the victims of the disaster on behalf of Pope Francis.

Pope Francis to meet with Palestinian president on Saturday

January 11, 2017. Pope Francis will meet with Palestinian president, Mahmud Abbas on Saturday, January 14, at the Vatican to inaugurate the new Palestinian embassy to the Holy See.

Former Director of the Vatican's school for diplomats, Justo Mullor dies

December 30, 2016. The smiling archbishop Justo Mullor died this morning in Rome, at the Pío XI Clinic. He was 84 years old.
Pope Francis

Pope approves new decrees for the Causes of Saints

December 22, 2016. On Wednesday, December 21, Pope Francis authorized the following decrees for the Causes of Saints:

What is a cardinal?


Prefect Emeritus, Congregation for the Causes of Saints
"Cardinals make up a group of bishops who work directly and in a very special way with the Holy Father, in what is basically the government of the Universal Church. Cardinals are the Pope's direct and immediate advisers.”

The occasion when the Pope officially elevates the new cardinals is called a Consistory of Cardinals. And at the ceremony they are given a ring and red biretta.

Prefect Emeritus, Congregation for the Causes of Saints
"The cardinal's ring symbolisez unity, so it represents the Cardinal's marriage with the Church.”

They are called princes of the Church because they are the closest collaborators of the Pope. A title and a recognition that is also evident in the red sash and biretta. In addition, the color is unique and it distinguishes them from other priests and bishops. Red reminds them that they are willing to die for Christ and His Church and even shed their blood for it. It’s a special recognition that brings with it a great responsibility.

Prefect Emeritus, Congregation for the Causes of Saints
"Cardinals wear red because it's a way to express that they are always ready and willing to die for Christ, for the faith and for the Church. In short, they are ready to be martyrs.”

The Cardinals often lead major dioceses in the world, but their unique responsibility is voting in a conclave. It's part of an election process that is carried out under the strictest secrecy. Failure to comply can even result in excommunication. A maximum of 120 cardinals under the age of 80 can vote in the conclave to elect the new Pope of the Catholic Church.

Prefect Emeritus, Congregation for the Causes of Saints
"All cardinals have this extremely delicate responsibility. It's very important, because really it's something decisive for the Church. Of course, choosing the future Pope it's extremely important.”

And although it is not as well known to the public, cardinals also have the privilege of requesting an audience with the Pope.