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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.”

Pope to Ambassadors: Stop Human Trafficking. It's a disgrace!


The Pope welcomed 16 non-resident ambassadors to the Vatican's Clementine Hall and one by one, they presented their credentials before Pope Francis. Different cultures and even languages, came together to represent their country before the Holy See. The Pope, even got to practice his French. 

"Thank you very much.  I hope you have a great visit. Please pray for me.” 

Then he spoke his native Spanish.

"It's a pleasure to meet you. I hope you feel at home.” 

Just months away from the Pope's trip to the Holy Land, Palestine's ambassador, Amad Rashid, also presented his credentials. 

Palestine's Ambassador to the Holy See
"Your Holiness, I'm honored to give you my credentials on behalf of the Holy Land and the Palestinian people. It' a pleasure.” 

Among the diplomats were ambassadors from Jordan, Kuwait, Sweden, Pakistan, Malta, Sierra Leone, Norway and Denmark. The Pope called on all of them to help stop human trafficking, adding that governments have the power to prevent it. 

"All people of good will, whether they profess a religion or not, cannot allow women, men or children to be treated like objects. They're deceived, abused, often times sold for different purposes, but in the end they're killed or perhaps left damaged physically and mentally. They're finally discarded and abandoned. It's a disgrace!

The Pope described human trafficking as a crime against humanity. He called on all ambassadors to join forces to prevent it, adding it's not just a matter of justice, security or finances. Above all else, he said it's about human dignity. 

"Christians recognize the face of Jesus, who identified with the smallest and the neediest among us.” 

The Pope then added that human trafficking is not only modern slavery but also a global problem that affects all countries, even the most developed.