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Pope Francis

Nicolás Maduro meets with the pope in surprise visit to Rome

October 24, 2016. Pope Francis met with Venezuelan president, Nicolás Maduro. The private visit took place in the midst of the "worrysome political, social, and economic situation the country is going through, which is having serious repercussins in the daily life of the people,” according to a statement from the Vatican.

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.”

Cardinal De Paolis on the Synod: Families are facing many serious problems


Next week, the eyes of the world will be fixed on the Vatican as the Synod of bishops begins. 

The synod will focus on "The Pastoral challenges of the Family in the Context of the Evangelization”.

It comes at a crucial time in today's history where the sacrament of marriage, marital fidelity and family life are in crisis. 

This is the thought of Cardinal Velasio De Paolis, the former president of the Prefecture for the Economic Affairs of the Holy See. He is also a member of the Apostolic Signature, the Church's highest court. 

"It is true that marriage and the family is the nucleus of society. If marriage is in crisis, then society is in crisis. And if society is in crisis, the family is in crisis. This is not a crisis of the marginalized. The anthropological vision is in crisis. Today, we no longer know who is man.”

The Cardinal also stressed that while the question of those who are divorced and remarried is important, it is not the only important issue that affects families today. 

"There are so many other problems that are probably even more serious. There are many who do not marry anymore and just live together. And this is a big problem! Not just in our western, European world. We know that this is a very big problem in Latin America.”

Cardinal De Paolis said that neither the Synod nor the Pope will set out to change established Church doctrine on marriage, but to find new ways to address issues for the good of the family. 

"These are not things that can be changed capriciously. Not even the Pope can change the doctrine of the Church. It is about understanding if a certain doctrine of the Church is either intangible or if its a praxis of the Church than can be modified.”

This is just one of the topics of a Synod called to study the comprehensive problems families are facing today in all areas of the world.