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Vaticaleaks-2: Court charged five people for “procuring and revealing” confidential material
November 21, 2015. A Vatican Court formally charged a pair of journalists, two officials, and a secretary to one of the officials for "procuring and revealing” confidential documents and information. They are Gianluigi Nuzzi and Emiliano Fittipaldi, -who recently wrote books regarding mismanagement in the Vatican-, as well as the Msgr. Lucio Ángel Vallejo Balda, Francesca Chaouqui and Vallejo’s secretary, Nicola Maio. While all five are charged with criminal misappropriation and misuse of Vatican confidential documents; Vallejo, Chaouqui, and Maio, are charged with criminal conspiracy "to divulge information and documents concerning the fundamental interests of the Holy See and the State”. A hearing has been scheduled for next November 24th, 2015 in the Vatican criminal court.
New archbishop in Barcelona (Spain)
November 6, 2015. Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of Cardinal Lluís Martínez Sistach as Archbishop of Barcelona (Spain). He has named Monsignor Juan Jose Omella in his place. He was until now Bishop of the Diocese of Calahorra and La Calzada-Logroño.
Vatican arrests two people for allegedly leaking confidential documents
November 2, 2015. The Vatican Police have arrested two people, reportedly linked to the leak of confidential Holy See documents. They are: Msgr. Lucio Angel Vallejo Balda and Francesca Chaouqui, both of whom were members of COSEA, which stands for the Pontifical Commission for Reference on the Organization of the Economic Administrative Structure of the Holy See. After her arrest, Francesca Chaouqui was released, after giving her testimony to the Vaticans District Attorneys office. But Msgr. Vallejo Balda is still in custody. He is accused of leaking secret Vatican documents. His arrest comes just days before the release of a book which allegedly contains private conversations between the Pope and COSEA officials. The Holy See describes the release and publication of the documents as a violation of the Popes trust. The Vatican continues to investigate the source of the document leaks. It also adds that if needed, it will seek the assistance of international entities to clarity the allegations. The Vatican also adds that leaking documents in no way helps the mission of the Church or that of the Pope.
Vatican sends condolences to Putin and Russian people after plane crash
November 2, 2015. Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican Secretary of State, has sent a telegram on behalf of Pope Francis to Russian President Vladimir Putin. He offers his condolences for the recent plane crash in which more than 200 Russians died. The full text is here: Having learned with sadness of the tragic crash of the Russian airline in the Sinai Peninsula, His Holiness Pope Francis conveys his condolences to you and the Russian people. He offers the assurance of his prayers for all who have died and for those who mourn their loss. Upon the nation and all involved in the recovery efforts His Holiness invokes the strength and peace of Almighty God.

Pope Francis on Ash Wednesday: Lent reminds us that we are not God


Pope Francis' first Ash Wednesday took place at the Roman Basilica of St. Anselmo. He began there a procession to the Basilica of St. Sabina, to symbolize the 40-day long "itinerary.”

He arrived just before 5PM, and celebrated Mass. He also received the ashes from Slovak Card. Jozef Tomko.

During his homily, the Pope explained how Christians should approach the Lenten season. He called for an honest "conversion of the heart,” and said that this "challenge” does not exclude anyone. 

"We know that this world, ever more artificial, makes us live out in a culture of 'doing,' of the 'useful,' where, without realizing it, we exclude God from our horizon, and we exclude the horizon itself. Lent calls us to 'wake up,' to remind us that we are creatures, that we are simply not God.”

The Pope called out those who seek only power, and are willing to do anything to get it.

"When I see in everyday life some power struggles to take up space, I think: 'These people are playing God Creator.' They still haven't realized that they are not God.”

Pope Francis said that Lent is a moment to open up to others. And to do so, he added, there are three key words: prayer, fasting, and charity.

"All three share the need to not let appearances take over. Looks don't matter. The value of life does not depend on the approval of others, or on success, but of what we have inside.”

The cardinal members of the Roman Curia joined Pope Francis for Mass. Some may have even recalled that last year's Ash Wednesday was the last major ceremony for Benedict XVI as Pope. It took place in St. Peter's Basilica, just two days after he announced his resignation.