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Pope Francis

Pope Francis: No people is criminal and no religion is terrorist

February 17, 2017. Pope Francis has sent an important message to the Meetings of Popular Movements that is taking place in Modesto (California). The pope denounces the "moral blindness of this indifference”: "under the guise of what is politically correct or ideologically fashionable, one looks at those who suffer without touching them. But they are televised live; they are talked about in euphemisms and with apparent tolerance, but nothing is done systematically to heal the social wounds or to confront the structures that leave so many brothers and sisters by the wayside”.

The government of the Order of Malta will elect the successor of the Grand Master in April

February 15, 2017. On April 29, the Council Complete of State, the Order’s constitutional body, will elect the next Grand Master of the Sovereign Order of Malta (or, as provided for in the Constitution, a Lieutenant of the Grand Master, to hold office for a year).
Pope Francis

Pope names a Special Envoy for Medjugorje

< style> February 11, 2017. Pope Francis has asked Henryk Hoser, S.A.C., bishop of Warsaw-Prague (Poland), to go to Medjugorje as Special Envoy of the Holy See. According< g> the Vatican, "the mission has the aim of acquiring a deeper knowledge of the pastoral situation there and above all, of the needs of the faithful who go there in pilgrimage, and on the basis of this, to suggest possible pastoral initiatives for the future”.

Pope Francis advances eight new causes of sainthood

January 23, 2017. On January 20, Pope Francis met with Cardinal Angelo Amato, the prefect for the Congregation for the Causes of Saints to announce the publication of decrees for the advancement of eight causes of sainthood.

Pope's Army: New Swiss Guard recruits take their oath


The army has about 110 members. This year, 35 new recruits were sworn in. The ceremony made it official, but they had actually been in Rome training, during the Sede Vacante and Conclave period.

Swiss Guard Chaplain

"They directly experienced the conclave. It was a type of grace and a very intense preparation  for them. Living those moments when the Church feels the presence of the Holy Spirit, as cardinals elect the Head of the Church. They lived those moments directly and that gave way to a lot of questions that in a way prepared them for their new oath and loyalty to the Pope.”

Because of the rainy weather, this year the ceremony took place indoors, at the Vaticans Paul VI Hall. Usually, it takes place in St. Peter's Square.

As part of the ceremony, each new recruit grabs the Swiss Guard flag with one hand and with the other, they lift three fingers, which represents the Trinity. They promise to defend the Pope and his legitimate successors at all costs, even their own life. Speaking in their native language, they ask God and their patron saints for help.

Among the guests were Archbishop Angelo Becciu, from the Vatican's Secretariat of State. The president of the Swiss Confederation, Ueli Maurer was also seated in the front row. Of course, the proud family members of the new guards were there as well to cheer them on.

Family Member

"Today was great. It  has been a long preparation, we've been expecting this day for months.  Everyday we were thinking what are we going to do, what are we going to wear, is the weather going to be nice? How are the boys going to take the oath, how it going to be? This is a big honor, a privilege for our family we are very proud to be Swiss.”

So for at least two years, the new soldiers will be part of the smallest army in the world, with just about 110 members. It may be the smallest army, but it's also the most colorful and historic.