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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.
Vatican

Holy See confirms investigation of Order of Malta

January 17, 2017. The Holy See has issued a statement Tuesday in response to "attempts by the Order of Malta to discredit” the new group established by the Vatican to conduct the investigation of why the Chancellor of the Order of Malta was asked to step down.
World

Pope sends condolences for victims of Turkish cargo jet crash

January 16, 2017. On Monday morning, a Turkish cargo plane has tragically crashed in Kyrgyzstan, killing dozens and hospitalizing many others. Many homes and vehicles in the small village are also destroyed. As a result, Vatican Secretary of State, Pietro Parolin has sent a message of condolences to the victims of the disaster on behalf of Pope Francis.
Vatican

Pope Francis to meet with Palestinian president on Saturday

January 11, 2017. Pope Francis will meet with Palestinian president, Mahmud Abbas on Saturday, January 14, at the Vatican to inaugurate the new Palestinian embassy to the Holy See.
Vatican

Former Director of the Vatican's school for diplomats, Justo Mullor dies

December 30, 2016. The smiling archbishop Justo Mullor died this morning in Rome, at the Pío XI Clinic. He was 84 years old.

Meet the priest who was kidnapped by the Taliban and lived to tell about it

2015-07-15

He was kidnapped by the Taliban and lived to tell about it. His name is Alexis Prem Kumar. A Catholic priest from India, who was volunteering in a school in Afghanistan. One day his life turned upside down. 

FR. ALEXIS PREM KUMAR 
Kidnapping Victim 
"They put me in the backside of the car and they told me, not to look around and they asked me to lie down. Then, they told me if you look out, we will shoot you.” 

He was taken hostage by four gunmen. When he arrived to a local village, the first thing he saw was a young boy, who pointed his index finger to his neck, mimicking as if the priest's throat would be slashed. 

FR. ALEXIS PREM KUMAR 
Kidnapping Victim 
"They were in a sense brain washed. Totally brain washed. They were in a sense, forced to take up arms.” 

For months, his hands and feet were tied most of the time. It was mentally and physically exhausting. He would pray at least three hours a day, and that, he says, helped  him get through the ordeal. 

Without him knowing it, he says Pope Francis also helped. His captors gave him a small radio, where he could hear the Pope's voice. 

FR. ALEXIS PREM KUMAR 
Kidnapping Victim 
"I wanted to greet him personally, because when I was there in captivity, I used to listen to Vatican Radio. It was his program, speeches, homilies, it was really consoling me.”

This month, he got to greet Pope Francis in Rome and thank him for his support. After 8 months and 20 days, with the help of his Jesuit Order and the government,  he was released. Now he's back in India. 

He says the ordeal brought him closer to God and he has since forgiven his captors. Most surprisingly, he says, he is willing to go back and volunteer once again in that same small village where his life forever changed. 

FR. ALEXIS PREM KUMAR 
Kidnapping Victim 
"If my superiors, if they ask me to go, if that is God’s plan, I cannot say no to that.” 



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