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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.

Full text of the Pope's powerful speech to prisoners

2015-09-27

Dear Brothers and Sisters,


Thank you for receiving me and givingme the opportunity to be here with you and to share this time in yourlives. It is a difficult time, one full of struggles. I know it is apainful time not only for you, but also for your families and for allof society. Any society, any family, which cannot share or takeseriously the pain of its children, and views that pain as somethingnormal or to be expected, is a society "condemned” to remain ahostage to itself, prey to the very things which cause that pain.


I am here as a pastor, but above all asa brother, to share your situation and to make it my own. I have comeso that we can pray together and offer our God everything that causesus pain, but also everything that gives us hope, so that we canreceive from him the power of the resurrection.


I think of the Gospel scene where Jesuswashes the feet of his disciples at the Last Supper. This wassomething his disciples found hard to accept. Even Peter refused, andtold him: "You will never wash my feet” (Jn 13:8).


In those days, it was the custom towash someone’s feet when they came to your home. That was how theywelcomed people. The roads were not paved, they were covered withdust, and little stones would get stuck in your sandals. Everyonewalked those roads, which left their feet dusty, bruised or cut fromthose stones. That is why we see Jesus washing feet, our feet, thefeet of his disciples, then and now.


Life is a journey, along differentroads, different paths, which leave their mark on us.


We know in faith that Jesus seeks usout. He wants to heal our wounds, to soothe our feet which hurt fromtravelling alone, to wash each of us clean of the dust from ourjourney. He doesn’t ask us where we have been, he doesn’tquestion us what about we have done. Rather, he tells us: "Unless Iwash your feet, you have no share with me” (Jn 13:8). Unless I washyour feet, I will not be able to give you the life which the Fatheralways dreamed of, the life for which he created you. Jesus comes tomeet us, so that he can restore our dignity as children of God. Hewants to help us to set out again, to resume our journey, to recoverour hope, to restore our faith and trust. He wants us to keep walkingalong the paths of life, to realize that we have a mission, and thatconfinement is not the same thing as exclusion.


Life means "getting our feet dirty”from the dust-filled roads of life and history. All of us need to becleansed, to be washed. All of us are being sought out by theTeacher, who wants to help us resume our journey. The Lord goes insearch of us; to all of us he stretches out a helping hand.


It is painful when we see prisonsystems which are not concerned to care for wounds, to soothe pain,to offer new possibilities. It is painful when we see people whothink that only others need to be cleansed, purified, and do notrecognize that their weariness, pain and wounds are also theweariness, pain and wounds of society. The Lord tells us this clearlywith a sign: he washes our feet so we can come back to the table. Thetable from which he wishes no one to be excluded. The table which isspread for all and to which all of us are invited.


This time in your life can only haveone purpose: to give you a hand in getting back on the right road, togive you a hand to help you rejoin society. All of us are part ofthat effort, all of us are invited to encourage, help and enable yourrehabilitation. A rehabilitation which everyone seeks and desires:inmates and their families, correctional authorities, social andeducational programs. A rehabilitation which benefits and elevatesthe morale of the entire community.


Jesus invites us to share in his lot,his way of living and acting. He teaches us to see the world throughhis eyes. Eyes which are not scandalized by the dust picked up alongthe way, but want to cleanse, heal and restore. He asks us to createnew opportunities: for inmates, for their families, for correctionalauthorities, and for society as a whole.


I encourage you to have this attitudewith one another and with all those who in any way are part of thisinstitution. May you make possible new opportunities, new journeys,new paths.


All of us have something we need to becleansed of, or purified from. May the knowledge of that fact inspireus to live in solidarity, to support one another and seek the bestfor others.


Let us look to Jesus, who washes ourfeet. He is "the way, and the truth, and the life”. He comes tosave us from the lie that says no one can change. He helps us tojourney along the paths of life and fulfillment. May the power of hislove and his resurrection always be a path leading you to new life.