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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.

Pope to UN Sec. General: Resist the economy of exclusion and the culture of death

2014-05-09

POPE FRANCIS
"Nice to meet you.”

BAN KI-MOON
United Nation's Secretary General 
"It's a great honor to meet you again.”

Pope Francis met with UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon in the Vatican. But it was more than just a one on one meeting. The Pope actually addressed a full room of executives who lead different UN agencies, funds and programs. 

First, the Secretary General said a few words. 

BAN KI-MOON
United Nation's Secretary General 
"We represent the family of the United Nations. We meet in a time of test for the human family.” 

In his speech, the Pope called for an economy of inclusion that helps the poor and marginalized, adding that a lot more work still needs to be done. 

POPE FRANCIS
"In the case of global political and economic organization, much more needs to be achieved, since an important part of humanity does not share in the benefits of progress and is in fact relegated to the status of second-class citizens.”

He also highlighted the need to resist the  throwaway culture and the culture of death. All of which, he said,  run the risk of becoming passively accepted. 

POPE FRANCIS
"The dignity of each of our brothers and sisters whose life is sacred and inviolable from conception to natural death must lead us to share with complete freedom the goods which God’s providence has placed in our hands.” 

As a gift, Ban Ki-Moon gave the Pope a crystal platter. Before heading out, he invited the Pope to the UN. 

BAN KI-MOON
United Nation's Secretary General 
"I hope you will be able to visit the UN as soon as possible.” 


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