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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

Pope will not be able to travel to Israel on Friday to attend the funeral of Shimon Peres

September 28, 2016. Despite the rumors that Pope Francis will travel to Israel to attend Shimon Peres funeral, the Vatican has issued a statement officially announcing a confirmation for the pope's scheduled visit to Georgia and Azerbaijan will remain as planned on Friday. The pope spoke warmly about the former leader and sent out a telegram of condolences:
Pope Francis

Pope's schedule during his trip to Sweden

September 27, 2016. Pope Francis will travel to Sweden next October 31 and November 1, for the occasion of the Lutheran–Catholic Common Commemoration of the Reformation.This will be the 17th trip of his pontificate.
World

Third priest found dead in Mexico

September 26, 2016.Mexican priest, Alfredo Lopez Guillen, was found dead this weekend on a rural road about 350 km east of Mexico City, after being allegedly abducted and assaulted in his parish on Monday September 19. This is the third case of violence against priests in Mexico in just one week. On Monday, September 19, Fr. Nabor Jiménez and Fr. José Alfredo Juarez were also kidnapped in the church of Our Lady of Fatima. Hours later they found them lifeless in a ditch in Poza Rica, Veracruz. The Catholic Church wants clarification on the murders, because it is not yet known who could be the alleged perpetrators.
Pope Francis

Holy See adopts UN Convention against Corruption

September 23, 2016. Pope Francis has asked the Vatican to be exemplary in the fight against corruption and meet the set international standards in this regard. Therefore, the Secretary of State has announced that the Holy See will conform to the Merida Convention against Corruption. This requires countries to implement anti-corruption measures concerning its laws, institutions and practices. From now on, the Roman Curia and the Vatican City State will review its administrative procedures to align them to the standards set by the Convention. Through this compliance, the Vatican says it hopes to contribute to increased transparency and proper management of public affairs in the international community.
Pope Francis

Cardinal Parolin to preside at liturgy before peace signing between Colombia and FARC

September 20, 2016. Colombia's government has invited the Vatican Secretary of State, Pietro Parolin, to preside over a liturgy before the ceremony to unite representatives from the Colombian government and the FARC, in Cartagena de Indias. The liturgy will take place before the ceremony related to agreements of Havana between the Colombian government and the FARC. It will be next Monday, September 26, and dozens of heads of state are scheduled to attend. In the liturgy, Parolin will "ask God to enlighten each Colombian to work conscientiously and with complete freedom, so that in a responsible and informed way, they can participate in making decisions that concern the common good of the entire country, which is so dear to Pope Francis."
Pope Francis

Pope Francis pays tribute to Father Jacques Hamel

September 13, 2016. Pope Francis will celebrate Mass for Jacques Hamel, the priest murdered in France by two terrorists on July 26 in the church of Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray. It will be held on Wednesday, September 14 at 7 a.m inside the chapel of his residence in Casa Santa Marta. The bishop from Diocese of Rouen along with 80 pilgrims from the same diocese will be present.
Pope Francis

Pope Francis' calendar from September to November

SEPTEMBER Sunday 25, 26th Sunday of Ordinary Time: At 10.30 a.m. in St. Peter’s Square, Holy Mass and Jubilee of Catechists. Friday 30 to Sunday 2 October: Apostolic trip to Georgia and Azerbaijan. OCTOBER Saturday 8: At 5.30 p.m. in St. Peter’s Square, Marian vigil. Sunday 9, 28th Sunday of Ordinary Time: At 10.30 a.m. in St. Peter’s Square, Holy Mass and Marian Jubilee. Sunday 16: 29th Sunday of Ordinary Time: At 10.15 in St. Peter’s Square, Holy Mass and canonisation of Blesseds Salomone Leclercq, José Sanchez del Rio, Manuel González García, Lodovico Pavoni, Alfonso Maria Fusco, José Gabriel del Rosario Brochero, and Elisabeth of the Holy Trinity. Monday 31 to Tuesday 1 November: Apostolic trip to Sweden to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. NOVEMBER Friday 4: At 11.30 in the Vatican Basilica, Holy Mass for the souls of cardinals and bishops who died during the year. Sunday 6, 32nd Sunday of Ordinary Time: At 10 a.m. in the Vatican Basilica, Holy Mass and Jubilee of Prisoners. Sunday 13, 33rd Sunday of Ordinary Time: At 10 a.m. in the Vatican Basilica, Holy Mass and Jubilee of the Homeless. Sunday 20, Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe: At 10 a.m. in St. Peter’s Square, Holy Mass for the conclusion of the Jubilee of Mercy.

Bishop in the Central African Republic: the people must put their hopes in the Pope's visit

2015-08-04

The Pope has made it very clear that he intends to  visit to Africa. And he has said this on more than one occasion. The first time was in January, while he was returning from his trip to Sri Lanka and the Philippines. In the massive gathering of priests in Rome, he repeated this desire to visit Africa. 

POPE FRANCIS
"God willing, I will visit Africa this November: First, the Central Republic of Africa, and afterwards Uganda. There's the possibility that I will visit Kenya, but this is still uncertain due to logistical problems.”

The visit will occur towards the end of the month and Monsignor Juan José Aguirre will welcome the Pope to the Central African Republic.

MSGR. JUAN JOSÉ AGUIRRE
Bishop of Bangassou (Central African Republic)
"We are very happy, very happy that the Central African Republic will be able to welcome the Pope, -not only Catholics-, Protestants and Muslims also see this visit as a divine blessing."

This Spanish bishop, a Comboni missionary, has lived in the country for more than 36 years. In these past two years, he has witnessed the violence caused by the Sélèka, a jihadist faction, and their enemies, the anti-Balaka. Both factions are equally bloodthirsty. Each of them oppresses a population already struggling to survive a devastating famine. 

MSGR. JUAN JOSÉ AGUIRRE
Bishop of Bangassou (Central African Republic)
"The Pope will find an enormous amount of poor people here who live on less than a euro a day, and yet he will find that these people are very religious.”

But the people of the Central African Republic should not be defined solely by abject poverty. The Pope will find people here who fight to survive and who deeply desire to live.

These are pictures of his diocese of Bangassou. A few days ago, the bishops of the Central African Republic met with the Pope during their visit ad limina. Monsignor Juan José Aguirre wasn't able to attend because he had had a heart attack, the third one in the past few years. Weeks later, after recovering, he visited Rome. This time he spoke with Pope Francis

MSGR. JUAN JOSÉ AGUIRRE
Bishop of Bangassou (Central Republic of Africa)
"The entire population of the Central African Republic has great hopes that the Pope merely by his presence will bless both our electoral process and its result.”

This is one of the main results people are hoping will be obtained through the Pope's visit: the election of a new president who will give the country much needed stability. Another is the disarmament of the militias, many of which are made up of kidnapped child soldiers. Despite the difficulties, as Monsignor Aguirre says, there is still hope and the country has given him a new perspective on life and faith. 

MSGR. JUAN JOSÉ AGUIRRE
Bishop of Bangassou (Central Republic of Africa)
"If I were born a second time, I would do everything the same way. Just like poet Pablo Neruda says: "I confess that I have lived.” My life has been filled with precious moments, moments that make my heart swell with gratitude.”


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