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Holy See and Vietnam begin their 6th bilateral meeting today

October 24, 2016. The sixth meeting between the Holy See and a delegation of Vietnam begins today to improve relations between the two states. The Vatican delegation is headed by Antoine Camilleri, while the head of the Vietnamese delegation is Bui Thanh Son, with Foreign Affairs. The last meeting between the two state delegations was in September 2014.
Pope Francis

Pope to award 2016 Ratzinger Prize to Inos Biffi and Ioannis Kourempeles

October 20, 2016. The winners of this year's Ratzinger Prize will be Inos Biffi and Ioannis Kourempeles. The former, an Italian priest, is an expert in Systematic Theology and History of Medieval Theology. The latter is Greek and an Orthodox. He is an expert in History of Dogmas and Dogmatic Theology. He will be the first Orthodox to be awarded the prize given by the Joseph Ratzinger Foundation, considered by many the Nobel Prize of Theology.
Pope Francis

Pope Francis sends his condolences to Thais after the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej

October 14, 2016. Pope Francis has sent a message to the Prime Minister of Thailand to express his condolences for the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej. He was 88 years old, and his reign spanned seven decades. Pope Francis said he is "deeply saddened” and he expresses his closeness to the members of the royal family and the Thai people.
Pope Francis

Pope sends 100,000 dollars for Hurricane Matthew victims

October 14, 2016. Through the Pontifical Council "Cor Unum", Pope Francis will send $100,000 to the victims of Hurricane Matthew in Haiti. The money will fund relief efforts in the first stages of recovery after the devastating effects of the hurricane. With this gesture, the pope wants to express his "closeness of spirit and fatherly support” to everyone in the affected area.
Pope Francis

Pope authorizes new decrees of heroic virtues for four potential saints

October 11, 2016. Pope Francis authorized the Congregation for the Causes of Saints to promulgate the decree of heroic virtues to four people, who are being investigated by the Church for possible sainthood. The decrees were given to the following "Servants of God:”
Pope Francis

Pope Francis rejects death penalty on Twitter: #NoDeathPenalty

October 10, 2016. The Pope has has given his support via Twitter to the World Day Against the Death Penalty. The following message can be read in each of his nine accounts, in their respective languages: "Punishment should necessarily include hope! #NoDeathPenalty.”
Pope Francis

Pope Francis announces Synod about youth and vocation

October 6, 2016. It will be held in 2018 under the name "Youth, faith, and vocational discernment.” Preparations for the second Synod of bishops convened by Pope Francis are well underway.

Theme chosen for 2017 World Communications Day

September 29, 2016. The theme for the 2017 World Communications Day has officially been announced. Coming from the book of Isiah, the theme is: "Fear not, for I am with you: communicating hope and trust in our time.”
Pope Francis

Pope will not be able to travel to Israel on Friday to attend the funeral of Shimon Peres

September 28, 2016. Despite the rumors that Pope Francis will travel to Israel to attend Shimon Peres funeral, the Vatican has issued a statement officially announcing a confirmation for the pope's scheduled visit to Georgia and Azerbaijan will remain as planned on Friday. The pope spoke warmly about the former leader and sent out a telegram of condolences:
Pope Francis

Pope's schedule during his trip to Sweden

September 27, 2016. Pope Francis will travel to Sweden next October 31 and November 1, for the occasion of the Lutheran–Catholic Common Commemoration of the Reformation.This will be the 17th trip of his pontificate.

Third priest found dead in Mexico

September 26, 2016.Mexican priest, Alfredo Lopez Guillen, was found dead this weekend on a rural road about 350 km east of Mexico City, after being allegedly abducted and assaulted in his parish on Monday September 19. This is the third case of violence against priests in Mexico in just one week. On Monday, September 19, Fr. Nabor Jiménez and Fr. José Alfredo Juarez were also kidnapped in the church of Our Lady of Fatima. Hours later they found them lifeless in a ditch in Poza Rica, Veracruz. The Catholic Church wants clarification on the murders, because it is not yet known who could be the alleged perpetrators.

A look at a typical day for the Pope


This is one of the Pope's closest collaborators. For years he worked with the Vatican's Secretariat of State and then in 2006, he was named a master of pontifical ceremonies. Things changed for this Argentinian, when the Pope was elected. That's him, standing right next to him. 

Papal Liturgical Celebrations
"After having breakfast, I talk to him for a bit, practically on a daily basis. We catch up and of course I keep him up to date with news in Argentina.” 

When it comes to the Pope's schedule, he says he follows a strict pattern. He wakes up at about 4.30 every morning. From 5.00 to 7.00 he prays and prepares the homily of his daily Mass in Casa Santa Marta. After greeting everyone there, he haves breakfast and then gets to work. Everything from private meetings to public events. 

Papal Liturgical Celebrations
"He can manage a lot of work. He's a very good listener and he connects with people easily. In fact, he is convinced that God makes Himself present in these daily encounters.” 

After meeting and greeting people, he also takes time to answer some letters. After lunch, roughly between 2 and 3 o clock, he takes a break. He then follows up with more meetings until 7 o clock. He prays the rosary, the Vespers and reads a few documents before calling it a day at roughly 10 pm. Despite the events he canceled a few weeks ago, Karcher, says, his health is fine.  Sometimes, he just needs to take a pause. 

Papal Liturgical Celebrations
"Health wise the Pope is doing well. He is strong and healthy. He follows a very organized schedule and it's not by chance. He wants it that way and it's a rhythm he personally sets and I don't think it wears him out.”

In the summer months of July and August, the Pope has less public events, but behind closed doors, he is never really off the clock. 

Pontifical Master of Ceremonies 
"Even though the Pope doesn't schedule as many events these months and despite the fact that Rome slows down during the summer, the Pope never really takes a vacation. It's something he links back to his time as the Archbishop of Buenos Aires, where a lot of people couldn't really take a vacation. He knows it's a privilege not everyone can enjoy.” 

So no vacation...and interestingly no television either. Pope Francis apparently doesn't watch tv and he didn't see the World Cup. When it comes to food, Karcher says, he misses Argentina's famous meats.

It may seem like just a regular day for someone who wants to be recognized as just a regular Argentinian with an average passport. Except of course, for the fact that he is the head of the Catholic Church and the spiritual leader of more than 1 billion Catholics.