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Pope Francis

Nicolás Maduro meets with the pope in surprise visit to Rome

October 24, 2016. Pope Francis met with Venezuelan president, Nicolás Maduro. The private visit took place in the midst of the "worrysome political, social, and economic situation the country is going through, which is having serious repercussins in the daily life of the people,” according to a statement from the Vatican.

Holy See and Vietnam begin their 6th bilateral meeting today

October 24, 2016. The sixth meeting between the Holy See and a delegation of Vietnam begins today to improve relations between the two states. The Vatican delegation is headed by Antoine Camilleri, while the head of the Vietnamese delegation is Bui Thanh Son, with Foreign Affairs. The last meeting between the two state delegations was in September 2014.
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.”

"Good morning.”

For the first time in his pontificate, Pope Francis met privately with the leaders of the autonomous Eastern Catholic Churches in full communion with Rome.

-"How's everything?”
-"All is well”

The Pope joined the patriarchs and major archbishops at the Consistory Hall inside the Vatican. The Church leaders are in Rome to take part in the Plenary Assembly for the Congregation for the Eastern Churches.

During the first of several events scheduled on Thursday, Pope Francis called on the patriarchs and major archbishops to be custodians of the unity and solidarity within the Catholic Church.

"So that our testimony is credible, we are called to always seek justice, piety, faith, charity, patience, and clemency.”

For the remainder of the session, the Pope listened to the concerns from each of the Churches represented. Each one is based in either Eastern Europe, India or the Middle East.

Two hours later, under the watchful eyes of several Byzantine icons, Pope Francis addressed the prelates taking part in the four day plenary assembly. 

He made an appeal for respect and freedom of worship in the Middle East, especially in conflict areas like Syria, Egypt and Iraq. He also said that Catholics must never resign themselves to a Middle East without Christians. 

"From East to West, the whole Church gives testimony to the Son of God, the Church, which, as noted later in the same conciliar text, 'is present in every nation of the earth, in fact, all the faithful around the world are in communion with the Holy Spirit.'”

The Pope said every Catholic should be thankful for the Churches in the Holy Land and asked them to pray for all the Christians in the region.

While all the Eastern Churches are independent, and follow the Byzantine or Greek traditions, they have all recognized the primacy of the Pope.

This is only the second meeting of its kind. The first took place back in 2010 under Benedict XVI. 

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