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Pope Francis

These are the names of the 17 new cardinals the pope appointed at the consistory

November 19, 2016. 13 of them are under the age of 80, and thus able to vote in a hypothetical conclave, and four of them are non-electors.
Vatican

Vatican congratulates Trump and hopes his time in office "can truly be fruitful"

November 9, 2016. While speaking to Vatican Radio, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican Secretary of State, congratulated the new president and hoped that his government "can truly be fruitful."
Vatican

Vatican strongly reacts to episcopal ordinations in China made without pope's permission

November 7, 2016. "In recent weeks, there has been a series of reports regarding some episcopal ordinations conferred without Papal Mandate of priests of the unofficial community of the Catholic Church in Continental China,” explains the Vatican in a letter signed by the Director of the Holy See Press Office, Greg Burke.

Year of Mercy and Indulgences: Papal letter addresses abortion, prisoners, sick and elderly

2015-09-01

Pope Francis has issued a letter, describing some specifics on the Jubilee Year of Mercy, which will begin on December 8th. It will be a period of grace and forgiveness. 
 
ABORTION
In the letter, he states that since forgiveness cannot be denied to those who have repented, during the Jubilee of Mercy, the Pope will allow diocesan priests the discretion to absolve the sin of abortion, for women who have had one and have repented for it. Usually priests can only absolve this sin, with the direct permission of their bishop. 

All faithful are called to make a pilgrimage, literally to the Holy Door, which will be open in every Cathedral or in parishes designated by the Diocesan Bishop. For those who will be traveling to Rome, the Holy Door in the city’s four Papal Basilicas will also be included. 
 
The pilgrimage is meant to be a sign of true conversion for one’s past sins. In order to receive the indulgence, it must be linked to the Sacraments of Reconciliation and the Eucharist. 

SICK/ELDERLY 
The elderly and sick who are limited in their mobility, can receive the indulgence by receiving Communion, attending Mass and community prayer. 
 
PRISONERS
The letter also makes note of prisoners, who can obtain the Indulgence in the chapels of their prisons. The threshold of their cell, it reads, can symbolize the passage of the Holy Door. 

ST. PIUS X
The Jubilee Year of Mercy will not exclude anyone. Faithful who choose to attend churches led by priests of the Fraternity of St. Pius X, will also receive the indulgence, when they go to confession with priests from that same fraternity. This despite, the friction the fraternity has had with the Catholic Church. 

The purpose of the Jubilee Year of Mercy is to forgive the sins of those who have truly repented, so they can strengthen their faith and give testimony. It will run from December 8th  to November 20th, 2016. 

 
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