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Pope Francis

Complete program of pope's trip to Fatima on May 12-13

March 20, 2017. The Vatican has published Pope Francis' program for his upcoming trip to Fatima.
Pope Francis

Pope Francis will travel to Egypt from 28 to 29 April 2017

March 18, 2017. In response to the invitation from the President of the Republic, the Bishops of the Catholic Church, His Holiness Pope Tawadros II and the Grand Imam of the Mosque of Al Azhar, Sheikh Ahmed Mohamed el-Tayyib, Pope Francis will make an Apostolic trip to the Arab Republic of Egypt from 28 to 29 April 2017, visiting the city of Cairo. The programme of the trip will be published shortly.
Pope Francis

Pope to meet with most powerful European leaders on March 24

March 3, 2017. On March 24 a historic meeting will take place between the pope and many of the most powerful heads of government throughout Europe. The meeting was announced by the Director of the Press Office of the Holy See, Greg Burke and will begin at 6 p.m. in the Sala Regia of the Apostolic Palace in the Vatican.

Stopping the Recruitment of Child Soldiers


February 12th marks the International Day against the Use of Child Soldiers. It's estimated that worldwide, there are roughly 300,000 kids, forced into armies. It's a common practice for many terrorist groups, like Boko Haram, which has a strong presence in Nigeria. 

President, Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace
"They strap the bombs to these young people because the military guys are not likely to search them very stringently. They can make them suicide victims.”

South Sudan is also facing this challenge. According to a UN report, in 2014 more than 12,000 children were forced to be soldiers in that country. 

President, Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace
"They would raid a school, capture all the young people and then, you know, introduce them to fighting. You know, they create a fighting force out of them.”

12 Year Old 
"I don't want to be a soldier. I will end up with nothing and I know that ultimately, if I keep on fighting, I will be killed.”

But it's not only boys who are targeted. Some girls are kidnapped and turned into sex slaves. Others are impregnated on purpose, so that their babies organs, can be sold in the black market. 

President, Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace
"So when their kids are born, they are brought up in special centers only to have their organs harvested from their bodies later.” 

War and conflicts are the perfect breeding grounds for abuse. The UN estimates that 15 million children have been affected by the wars in Iraq, South Sudan, Syria, Ukraine and the Czech Republic.

AA / Unifeed