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Pope Francis

These are the names of the 17 new cardinals the pope appointed at the consistory

November 19, 2016. 13 of them are under the age of 80, and thus able to vote in a hypothetical conclave, and four of them are non-electors.

Vatican congratulates Trump and hopes his time in office "can truly be fruitful"

November 9, 2016. While speaking to Vatican Radio, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican Secretary of State, congratulated the new president and hoped that his government "can truly be fruitful."

Vatican strongly reacts to episcopal ordinations in China made without pope's permission

November 7, 2016. "In recent weeks, there has been a series of reports regarding some episcopal ordinations conferred without Papal Mandate of priests of the unofficial community of the Catholic Church in Continental China,” explains the Vatican in a letter signed by the Director of the Holy See Press Office, Greg Burke.

Rose Petals shower Rome's Basilica of St. Mary Major


The dedication of the  Basilica ofSt. Mary Major is celebrated each year on August 5.  During a Mass celebrated by Cardinal Santos Abril, the roof of the church opens,  showering the altar with rose petals to mark the miraculous snowfall that took  place over the Esquiline Hill, back  in the 4th Century. 

"We were hoping to see Pope Francis because he's from our country and we came to celebrate. We didn't know it was such an important feast for Rome and for the Church, and well, the rose petals exceeded all our expectations. We've truly had a beautiful, beautiful day.”

Despite the fiery August heat, many tourists and families went out to celebrate the feast day, which commemorates, the very first Western Basilica to be dedicated to the Mother of God.

"Back home, it's winter, so we're trying to adapt to the weather on our  first day. By eight in the morning, when we came to the church, we already felt the heat, so by midday we don't even want to imagine what it'll be like.”

During the homily, Cardinal Santos Abril said that Our Lady, as a Protrectress of the Roman People has attracted the devotion of many Popes. But he specifically mentioned Pope Francis, who since day one, has asked Our Lady to guide him during his pontificate.