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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.”

Pope Francis will start a busy trip to three Latin American countries on Sunday


Starting on Sunday, Pope Francis will leave Rome for an eight day whirlwind tour of Latin America. He'll travel by plane seven times and visit five cities in Ecuador, Bolivia, and Paraguay. It's a very personal trip for the Pope.

"He wanted to visit these three countries that aren't considered very important when evaluated with geopolitical criteria.”

The trip will start in Ecuador. The Pope will arrive in Quito in the middle of the afternoon on July 5th. There, he'll meet President Rafael Correa and will visit a senior center.

In Guayaquil, the largest city in Ecuador, Pope Francis will celebrate a Mass for Latin American families.

On Tuesday, July 8th, he will fly to Bolivia and land at the highest altitude airport in the world. It's located near La Paz, at an elevation of more than 13,000 feet. The Pope will only spend four hours there to avoid altitude sickness.

"He has decided to stop in El Alto and La Paz. He does so with complete calmness of mind, with the conviction to face this effort.”

Afterward, he'll head to Santa Cruz, where a meeting with popular movements will take place. The Pope will also visit a prison in Palmasola.

On Friday the 10th, he heads to Paraguay. He will only visit Asunción, although he will celebrate Mass at the Sanctuary of Caacupé, which is about 25 miles from the city. He will then visit  Bañado Norte, where about 100,000 people live. Before returning to Rome, the Pope will make a final stop at the place where a fire killed almost 400 people in 2004.