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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 creates 19 new cardinals. Calls on them to evangelize with courage


There was an unexpected guest in this consistory. Benedict XVI attended his first public ceremony as Pope Emeritus, sitting in the front row of St. Peter's Basilica. Wearing his white coat, he stood out amid all the cardinals wearing red. 

Pope Francis arrived a few minutes afterwards Breaking protocol, he walked over to Benedict XVI and hugged him. 

Pietro Parolin, who serves as Secretary of State, and who is also among the 19 new cardinals, greeted Benedict XVI. 

Holy See's Secretary of State 
"With the same affection and reverence, we greet our Pope Emeritus, His Holiness Benedict XVI. We're glad you're here with us.” 

In his speech, the Pope outlined what the Church expects and needs from the new cardinals. 

"The Church needs your courage, to proclaim the Gospel at all times, both  in season and out of season, and to bear witness to the truth. The  Church needs your compassion, especially at this time of pain and suffering for so many countries throughout the world.” 

He also talked about those who are persecuted and discriminated against, because of their religious beliefs. 

"The Church needs us to pray for them, so they may be firm in their faith and capable of responding to evil with good. May this prayer extend to all men and women who suffer from injustice because of their religious convictions.” 

This marks the Pope's first consistory. Pope Francis blessed the new cardinals before placing the traditional red beretta over them. At first he seemed somewhat solemn then more relaxed. 

Historically, since all Cardinals were in Rome, the Pope entrusted each one of them with a local Church in the Eternal City. That tradition still stands today. The Archbishop of Buenos Aires,  Marco Aurelio Poli, was assigned the same parish Pope Francis had before he was elected.

From the Ivory Coast, Cardinal Jean-Pierre Kutwa came in a wheelchair, so the Pope walked over to him, to give him his beretta and ring. 

With this ceremony, the number of Cardinal electors stands at 122. There are another 96 cardinals who are over the age of 80, meaning they can't vote in a conclave. 

It wasn't just cardinals who attended the ceremony, Brazil's president, Dilma Rousseff  was also there along with the President of Haiti Michel Martelly

Even the music had some symbolism. For the first the Sistine Chapel choir sang along with the choir of Westminster Cathedral

As the Catholic Church celebrates the Feast of the Day of St. Peter's Chair, the Basilica was set up accordingly. The Chair of St. Peter, designed centuries ago by Bernini, was surrounded with candles. And the statue of St. Peter stood amid the Basilica with papal vestments. 

In fact, towards the end Pope Francis first thanked Benedict XVI for attending. Then he walked towards the statue of St. Peter and prayed before it for a few moments. 

- BN
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