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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.
New bishop in France
October 30, 2015. Pope Francis has named Renauld de Dinechin bishop of Soissons. Until now he was the auxiliary bishop of the archdiocese of Paris.
New bishop in Spain
October 30, 2015. PopeFrancis has accepted the resignation of the archbishop of Burgos,Francisco Gil Hellin. He has named in his place Fidel Herraez Vegas,who has been an auxiliary bishop of Madrid since 1996.

Benedict XV: 100 years since his election


One hundred years ago, on September 3, 1914, Italian cardinal Giacomo della Chiesa became Pope Benedict XV. Elected at the dawn of World War I, history remembers him as a peace-maker.

His pontificate wasn't an easy one: back then, Europe was divided.

President, Pontifical Committee of Historical Sciences
"During that period, nationalism was huge. Patriotism, to love one's country, is a virtue, but nationalism is not, because it excludes. Nationalism it's not about loving your country, but rather about rejecting the rest of them. Benedict XV had to face all of this.”

This Pope witnessed the drama of World War I and dedicated his first encyclical, "Ad Beatissimi Apostolorum,” to call for peace. He described war as a useless massacre. In particular, he defined World War I as a dark tragedy in human History. During the conflict the Holy See remained impartial, a stance criticized by the countries involved in the conflict.

In his quest for peace, Benedict XV even addressed an apostolic exhortation to Heads of State, where he gave clear instructions on how to reach a ceasefire.

His calls for peace, though, were ignored and war continued until November 1918, leaving behind millions of deaths.

Benedict XV was the first Pope to call on a week of prayer for the unity of Christians. He also founded the Vatican's Congregation for the Oriental Churches. The Code of Canon Law was published during his pontificate.

He canonized Joan of Arc, and promoted interreligious dialogue. A monument in Turkey celebrates him as the "friend of the people.”

Benedict XV, is best known as the Pope of Peace. He passed away on January 22, 1922.

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