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Pope sends condolences for victims of Turkish cargo jet crash

January 16, 2017. On Monday morning, a Turkish cargo plane has tragically crashed in Kyrgyzstan, killing dozens and hospitalizing many others. Many homes and vehicles in the small village are also destroyed. As a result, Vatican Secretary of State, Pietro Parolin has sent a message of condolences to the victims of the disaster on behalf of Pope Francis.

Pope Francis to meet with Palestinian president on Saturday

January 11, 2017. Pope Francis will meet with Palestinian president, Mahmud Abbas on Saturday, January 14, at the Vatican to inaugurate the new Palestinian embassy to the Holy See.

Former Director of the Vatican's school for diplomats, Justo Mullor dies

December 30, 2016. The smiling archbishop Justo Mullor died this morning in Rome, at the Pío XI Clinic. He was 84 years old.
Pope Francis

Pope approves new decrees for the Causes of Saints

December 22, 2016. On Wednesday, December 21, Pope Francis authorized the following decrees for the Causes of Saints:

Papal foundation approves 125 microloans for aspiring entrepreneurs in Latin America


Since their inception in 1992, the Populorum Progressio Foundation has helped hundreds of peasants in Latin America earn a living. Each year, they loan aspiring entrepreneurs up to $15,000 dollars to start their own businesses.

Archbishop of La Paz (Bolivia) 
"An economist would surely laugh at that amount. But we think that a small amount can go a long way when it reaches the poor and the people who really need it.”

Archbishop of Guayaquil (Ecuador)
"We try to bring Christ's presence to peasants in Latin America, to Afro-descendent minorities, and to indigenous communities.”

The Foundation's administrative council, made up of select Latin American bishops finalized their annual meeting in Rome. They voted to fund 125 projects, worth an estimated $1.8 million.

The projects are spread out over 17 countries, and largely deal with with infrastructure or agricultural output. Once notified, the entrepreneurs will receive the money from their home diocese. But it's not a one-way flow.

Archbishop of La Paz (Bolivia) 
"A family can buy a herd of five or six sheep to become self sufficient. Then, with their earnings they start paying back part of what they received. That money goes to support other families.”

One of the last sessions of their three-day meeting was an audience with their colleague-turned-Pope. He improvised a speech, talking about the importance of their work in helping the poor, but also about strengthening societies today.

Archbishop of Guayaquil (Ecuador)
"Societies deprive themselves from their future, the children, from their past and memories, the elderly, and from their strength, which are the youth. In this sense, it becomes a truly incredible form of self-destruction.”

The Pope told the Foundation that one of the ways to fight against this is through education. He asked the members to promote education not only the initiatives they approve, but also in their home dioceses.