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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.

Lasers reveal spectacular frescos from ancient Roman catacomb

2016-03-26

It is a fresco depicting the Adoration of the Magi. This is the Virgin Mary, her Son, and two of the Wise Men. But don't worry, the third wasn't forgotten. Experts say that the artist who painted the catacomb of Sts. Marcellinus and Peter did so for reasons of symmetry.

A year of meticulous laser restoration has unveiled what was hidden behind a thick layer of black lime and dirt. They are paintings that speak of the transition from the Roman pagan world to Christianity.

CARD. GIANFRANCO RAVASI
President, Pontifical Commission for Sacred Archaeology
"Firstly, they speak to us about the importance of dialogue between the classical Roman world and the Christian world that was born. In fact, Christ is represented in the catacombs by the image of Orpheus attracting souls as a way to establish a bridge of dialogue between different cultures, very important in our time.”

Frescos like these are proof of this transition. A woman, Sabina, offers wine to her guests who are reclining on a triclinium. There's no type of religious reference; it's just a scene of everyday ancient Roman life.

A few meters down is Orpheus, a pagan symbol who converted to Christianity and who represents Christ himself.

The catacomb is an authentic, early Christian art gallery. It has regained all of its splendor, oddly enough, thanks to the contribution of Azerbaijan, a country primarily consisting of Shiite Muslims.

CARD. GIANFRANCO RAVASI
President, Pontifical Commission for Sacred Archaeology
"It's a big deal today when you see Islam and Christianity at odds due to fundamentalism. And what we see here is a great example of collaboration.”

Saint Marcellinus and Peter is one of the oldest catacombs of Rome, and also, one of the most unknown. It dates back from the 1st century AD and was in use until the ninth century. Therefore, it covers an area of about two hundred acres and several floors. Its paintings, labyrinthine corridors, and galleries, are some of the best testimonies of the rich, ancient presence of Christianity in the Eternal City.

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