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Vatican establishes diplomatic relations with Mauritania

December 9, 2016. The Vatican will establish diplomatic relations with Mauritania. This African country is an Islamic Republic extremely hostile towards Christians.

Vatican launches new website for the Protection of Minors from sex abuse

December 6, 2016. The Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors (PCPM) has launched a website to provide the public with information about their mission: "the effective protection of minors and a commitment to ensure their human and spiritual development.”
Pope Francis

These are the names of the 17 new cardinals the pope appointed at the consistory

November 19, 2016. 13 of them are under the age of 80, and thus able to vote in a hypothetical conclave, and four of them are non-electors.

Synod's Midterm Report: Modifications have been made to the wording of document


The Synod's midterm report caused a big stir in and outside the Vatican. Bishops have clarified that the report isn't final, but a work in progress.  Now the question is, what modifications will be carried out? 

Archbishop of Barcelona (Spain) 
"Yes, I would say that as a whole, the document has been recieved. But having said that, without a doubt there have been changes. In virtually every chapter, ammendments have been made.” 

The confusion was triggered on Monday, when statements made about homosexuality and co habitating couples were released in the document. 

Even though bishops didn't say what specific changes have been made in the report, they did stress that the wording will be based on reaching out to others instead of condemning. 

President U.S Conference of Catholic Bishops
"As we reach out with to that individual, we begin to where that person is and what that means by it’s very nature is to begin by looking and pointing to positive elements that are already in that person’s life or in that person’s relationship that will accompany them.  It’s not a way of denying, but rather of amplifying the beauty of our Church teachings. So I hope you will be able to see if our amendments are effective. I hope you will be able to see that there is a refinement of these words.”

It's not just about discussion, but about action. Specifically in creating pastoral programs in the Church that can accompany couples during all the highs and lows of married life. 

The first phase of the Synod will end of Sunday October 19th, but there's still a long way to go before concrete ideas are put in motion. 

President U.S Conference of Catholic Bishops
"How wise Pope Francis was to make this a one year process, because I think we would not be ready at the end of this week to give thoughtful, meaningful and I would say enduring pastoral direction.” 

The final version of the midterm report is expected to be approved and released by Saturday, October 18th.