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Pope Francis

Pope Francis: No people is criminal and no religion is terrorist

February 17, 2017. Pope Francis has sent an important message to the Meetings of Popular Movements that is taking place in Modesto (California). The pope denounces the "moral blindness of this indifference”: "under the guise of what is politically correct or ideologically fashionable, one looks at those who suffer without touching them. But they are televised live; they are talked about in euphemisms and with apparent tolerance, but nothing is done systematically to heal the social wounds or to confront the structures that leave so many brothers and sisters by the wayside”.

The government of the Order of Malta will elect the successor of the Grand Master in April

February 15, 2017. On April 29, the Council Complete of State, the Order’s constitutional body, will elect the next Grand Master of the Sovereign Order of Malta (or, as provided for in the Constitution, a Lieutenant of the Grand Master, to hold office for a year).
Pope Francis

Pope names a Special Envoy for Medjugorje

< style> February 11, 2017. Pope Francis has asked Henryk Hoser, S.A.C., bishop of Warsaw-Prague (Poland), to go to Medjugorje as Special Envoy of the Holy See. According< g> the Vatican, "the mission has the aim of acquiring a deeper knowledge of the pastoral situation there and above all, of the needs of the faithful who go there in pilgrimage, and on the basis of this, to suggest possible pastoral initiatives for the future”.

Pope Francis advances eight new causes of sainthood

January 23, 2017. On January 20, Pope Francis met with Cardinal Angelo Amato, the prefect for the Congregation for the Causes of Saints to announce the publication of decrees for the advancement of eight causes of sainthood.

Jean Vanier: The intellectually disabled can teach us about freedom


The 2015 Templeton Prize was recently awarded to Jean Vanier, who founded L’Arche in 1964. His organization provides homes and support programs for people with intellectual disabilities. During the ceremony on May 18th, Vanier discussed why communities are so significant to society. 

"Community, what is it? It is mission, but it is also loving each other. Mission: community is mission. Mission for what? Mission about bringing people together so that we can recognize each other as precious. Mission and concern for each other, or love for each other.”

Vanier's organization encourages people without intellectual disabilities to live alongside those who do have them. He discussed what people can learn from each other by doing this.

"Their gift is the gift of the heart. And one of their gifts is they're allowed to be crazy. We are not allowed to be crazy. We have to conform to what we should be. They can teach a little bit about freedom!”

He also joked about how he's learned how to be patient after living in community with others for more than half a century. 

"It's not all that easy to love each other when you live with people. You know, they get your goat. They annoy you. I don't know how that happens with you, but I've been living in community 50 years. It's a mess! It's a mess! You know, to live together, I hear in families it's the same sort of thing everywhere.”

The $1.5 million award is given to someone whose work has enhanced "life’s spiritual dimension.” Vanier, who is Roman Catholic, said that learning from the disabled can help bring people to a world of peace.

"We work to live the message, which is a beautiful message that those who are not endowed with great intellectual stuff, they are beautiful people. And they can teach us to love and break down the shackles of the need for power and lead us into a world, where there's a bit more peace.”

The 86-year-old Canadian started the organization when he invited two intellectually disabled men to live with him as friends. Thirty-five countries host nearly 150 L’Arche residential communities today.

Templeton Prize