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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.

Everything you need to know about the Vatileaks II trial

2015-11-23

The Vatileaks trial begins with five people accused of two different charges. Here's everything you need to know about the blockbuster case.

THE ACCUSED

The main suspects are two members of a committee created by Pope Francis to reform the administrative and financial offices of the Holy See. They are a Spanish priest, Lucio Ángel Vallejo Balda, and an Italian laywoman and PR expert, Francesca Chaouqui.

Balda's secretary Nicola Maio has also been charged.

They are accused of "criminal conspiracy to disseminate news and documents related to the fundamental interests of the Holy See and the Vatican City State.”

Also charged are the journalists Gianluigi Nuzzi and Emiliano Fittipaldi. They face charges of "illegally procuring and later revealing news and documents  related to the fundamental interests of the Holy See and the Vatican City State.”

THE PROCESS

The process begins at the Court of the Vatican City State on Tuesday, November 24th.

If any of the accused do not appear, they will be tried in absentia. Their lawyers have time until Saturday the 28th to present evidence in their defense.

The penalty for these offenses can be up to eight years in prison.

WHAT HAPPENED?

According to the prosecutor, the first three defendants collected and transmitted confidential information to the two journalists so that they could make it public.

The prosecutor added that reporters "requested and exerted pressure, especially on Balda, to obtain classified documents.”

They will elaborate on this "pressure” during the trial.

WHAT SECRET DOCUMENTS HAVE BEEN PUBLISHED?

The documents create a snapshot of the Pope's attempts to reform the Vatican in 2013 and 2014. The general idea, that the Pope encountered opposition to his reforms, is already well known. But the documents add more detail.

The most sensitive document is a recording of Pope Francis during a private meeting.

The stories also include reports and correspondence from people on the commission tasked with reforming the Vatican's financial and administrative organization. This includes data the Pope requested in 2013 about the state of the Vatican's finances.

The texts reveal that some Vatican departments resisted providing information to hide some excesses. It also shows a lack of understanding among cardinals, mismanagement of real estate, problems with the Vatican's pension system, and an unbalanced distribution of charitable giving, with too much being spent on administrative costs at the Holy See.

HOW HAS THE VATICAN RESPONDED?

Besides arresting and interrogating two of the leakers, a Vatican spokesman responded to several points in the publications:

- He said that they refer to a specific time and that work has already been completed.
- He denied there are problems in the pension system for Holy See employees.
- He recalled that by law, donations to St. Peter's are used for charity but also for the organizational management of the Catholic Church.

What remains to be seen is exactly why the Vatican employees leaked information, and whether the two journalists will be convicted for publishing it. 


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