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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.

Pope Francis at Casa Santa Marta: Mercy opens horizons, clerical rigidity closes hearts

2015-12-14

In his homily at Casa Santa Marta, Pope Francis explained that God's mercy opens horizons while clerical rigidity only closes hearts and causes pain.

POPE FRANCIS
"How beautiful is the freedom, the magnanimity, the hope, of a man or woman from the Church. But, how bad and how much pain is caused by the rigidity of a woman or a man of the Church, the clerical rigidity that has no hope.”

The Pope added that hope is a gift from God that allows Christians to make it past problems, difficulties, and even sins.

SUMMARY OF THE POPE'S HOMILY
(Source: Vatican Radio)

"Pope Francis said that those who possess this virtue of hope also have the freedom and the strength to see beyond the bad times whether they are to do with bad health or family problems.

And reflecting on the fact that in the Gospel the chief priests question Jesus and ask with which authority does he act, the Pope said: "they have no horizons, they are men who are locked in their calculations, they are slaves to their rigidity”

"Human calculations "– the Pope said – "close hearts and shut out freedom", whilst "hope gives us levity".

Pope Francis remarked on the beauty of freedom, of the hope of men and women of the Church.

On the other hand, he denounced the rigidity of men and women of the Church: "that clerical stiffness that contains no hope”.

"In this Year of Mercy – the Pope said - there are these two paths: one of those who hope in God’s mercy and know that God is the Father; and then there are those who take refuge in the slavery of rigidity and know nothing of God's mercy”. 

Pope Francis concluded his homily by recalling an event which took place in Buenos Aires in 1992 during a Mass for the sick. 

He said he had been confessing for many hours when he received a very old woman "with eyes that were full of hope":

"I said: 'Grandma, are you coming to confession?' Because I was about to leave. ‘Yes’ she answered and I said: ‘you have not sinned’.  She said: 'Father: we have all sinned – But God forgives all’. ‘How do you know?' I asked, and she said: 'Because if God did not forgive all, the world would not exist'.”

So – Pope Francis said: "before these two persons - the free one, the one with hope who brings God's mercy,  and the closed, legalistic slave of his own rigidity, let us remember the words of the old lady and the lesson she gave me: God  forgives all, He is  just waiting for you to get close to Him."