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Quake aftermath continues to torment ancient town of Amatrice as the death toll rises

August 25, 2016. Rescue teams continue to work tirelessly with the hope of finding new survivors, but the number of deaths will increase as there are still dozens missing. Italy's civil protection agency has announced that 190 have dead in the affected areas in the province of Rieti are overcome, while 57 were killed in the province of Ascoli. During the night, there have been up to 60 new tremors of between 3 and 4 degrees of magnitude. Rescuers worked overnight in the most affected Arquata del Tronto, Pescada< g> del Tronto, Accumoli< g> and Amatrice. The most dramatic situation exists in Amatrice, the largest municipality affected, and where 2,000 people live, but in the summer months doubles its population with vacationers and there were many tourists who had come to enjoy the weekend party pasta "amatriciana,” a dish that has its origins here. More than 1,000 people have been displaced by the quake.
World

Grand Ayatollah to Pope Francis: “Thank you for saying Islam is not equal to terrorism”

August 22, 2016. Grand Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi sent a letter to Pope Francis to thank him for his words on the flight back from Poland, a few weeks ago: "It is not right to say that Islam is a terrorist faith.” In his letter, the Shia religious leader has strongly condemned terrorist attacks from fundamentalist Islamic groups. He has also stated that "the vast majority of the Musilm people consider all Takfiri sects to be outside the fold of Islam.” Makarem Shirazi is one of the 64 Grand Ayatollahs in Shia Islam and, as such, one of the highest authorities in matters of Islamic dogma and law.
World

Pope conveys “solidarity and spiritual closeness” for the victims of wildfire in Portugal

August 16, 2016. The fire has killed at least five people and caused hundreds to evacuate their homes. The Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin addressed a letter, on behalf of Pope Francis, to the bishop of Funchal, Antonio Carrilho. The letter was read during the celebration of Holy Mass for Our Lady of the Mount, Patroness of Funchal. In the letter, Pope Francis expressed his condolences and sorrow over the loss of life and property in the Portuguese island of Madeira, where wildfires have killed at least five people and caused hundreds to evacuate their homes. Pope Francis conveys "solidarity and spiritual closeness” for the victims and those displaced by the wildfires and prayed for the wounded and asked them to have "courage and consolation in Christian hope” for all involved.
World

Pope sends condolences to North America in wake of Hurricane Earl

August 9, 2016. Pope Francis sent his prayers and condolences to the victims in the wake of Hurricane Earl through a message sent by the Vatican’s Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin. The hurricane killed at least 45 people in Mexico and 13 in the Dominican Republic and caused an estimated $50 million in damage.
World

Pope sends his condolences following attack that killed 70 people at a hospital in Pakistan

August 9, 2016. The terrorist attack at Quetta Hospital killed dozens of lawyers and left 120 others injured.
Pope Francis

Pope Francis officially establishes the commission to study the diaconate of women

August 2, 2016. Six women and six men will study the diaconate of women "with regard to the first ages of the Church.”
Vatican

Federico Lombardi appointed new president of The Ratzinger Foundation

Aug. 1, 2016. Today Fr. Lombardi officially ceases to be director of the Vatican Press Office and becomes the president of The Ratzinger Foundation. Father Federico Lombardi will chair the board of the Vatican foundation established by Pope Benedict XVI in 2010. Until now it was run by president Monsignor Giuseppe Scotti. The Ratzinger Foundation promotes the study of theology, organizes cultural and scientific congresses and rewards the work of scholars and researchers in different fields.

10 phrases by Pope Francis that have changed the world

2013-12-13

 

In just nine months the Pope's words have inspired millions of people. In fact, his very first words as Pontiff left everyone at St. Peter's Square completely speechless.

And speaking about words, ever since that night some of his expressions have become all too familiar.

March 13
"Now I ask you a favor. Before the bishop blesses his people, I ask that all of you pray to the Lord so that He blesses me.”

Even Sundays aren't the same if Pope Francis doesn't end his prayer of the Angelus with a unique yet endearing remark.

March 17
"Have a good Sunday, and a good lunch!”

But one thing is clear from the beginning. He isn't a fan of written speeches. An example was seen during his meeting with journalists after the Conclave when he made this request.

March 16
"How I would like a Church that is poor and for the poor!”

A Church made out of shepherds close to their sheep. That is one of the ideas Pope Francis always tries to communicate. He said so during the Chrism Mass during the Holy Week.

March 28
"This is what I ask of you. Be shepherds with the 'smell of the sheep.'”

Also thanks to his speeches and homilies, Christians now know that a city's outskirts aren't as far as they seem.

March 27
"To live out Holy Week according to Jesus means that we have to learn to go out of ourselves to encounter others, to go to the 'outskirts' of existence.”

And in Rio he even made a very direct appeal to every youth not just to talk but to rise up and 'take action'.

July 25
"But I also want to stand up and take action in your dioceses, I want you to go beyond your comfort zone. I want the Church to go out to the street.”

From the very start, he has made clear that the key points of his message to the world are kindness and mercy.

March 17
"God understands us, He waits for us. He doesn't get tired of forgiving us. If we repent and go to him with a truly open heart.”

July 7
"Don't be afraid, don't be afraid. The Lord is the Lord of consolation, the Lord of tenderness.”

God never grows tired of forgiving, but the Pope also added that a Christian cannot lead a double life.

November 11
"And we must acknowledge ourselves as sinners. Yes, everyone here, we all are. But not corrupt.”

The Pope has also asked families to always be forgiving in spite of the fights and the difficulties. Even when things start flying up in the air.

October 4
"To newlyweds, I always give this advice: Argue as much as you want, if the plates start flying, so be it. But never let the day end without making peace. Never!”

Not all revolutionary phrases are included, but those that are, have surely left a mark. Many of the Pope's words will be remembered for their impact, and many others for their novelty. But one thing is clear. They did not go unnoticed.


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