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Pope Francis

Nicolás Maduro meets with the pope in surprise visit to Rome

October 24, 2016. Pope Francis met with Venezuelan president, Nicolás Maduro. The private visit took place in the midst of the "worrysome political, social, and economic situation the country is going through, which is having serious repercussins in the daily life of the people,” according to a statement from the Vatican.

Holy See and Vietnam begin their 6th bilateral meeting today

October 24, 2016. The sixth meeting between the Holy See and a delegation of Vietnam begins today to improve relations between the two states. The Vatican delegation is headed by Antoine Camilleri, while the head of the Vietnamese delegation is Bui Thanh Son, with Foreign Affairs. The last meeting between the two state delegations was in September 2014.
Pope Francis

Pope to award 2016 Ratzinger Prize to Inos Biffi and Ioannis Kourempeles

October 20, 2016. The winners of this year's Ratzinger Prize will be Inos Biffi and Ioannis Kourempeles. The former, an Italian priest, is an expert in Systematic Theology and History of Medieval Theology. The latter is Greek and an Orthodox. He is an expert in History of Dogmas and Dogmatic Theology. He will be the first Orthodox to be awarded the prize given by the Joseph Ratzinger Foundation, considered by many the Nobel Prize of Theology.
Pope Francis

Pope Francis sends his condolences to Thais after the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej

October 14, 2016. Pope Francis has sent a message to the Prime Minister of Thailand to express his condolences for the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej. He was 88 years old, and his reign spanned seven decades. Pope Francis said he is "deeply saddened” and he expresses his closeness to the members of the royal family and the Thai people.
Pope Francis

Pope sends 100,000 dollars for Hurricane Matthew victims

October 14, 2016. Through the Pontifical Council "Cor Unum", Pope Francis will send $100,000 to the victims of Hurricane Matthew in Haiti. The money will fund relief efforts in the first stages of recovery after the devastating effects of the hurricane. With this gesture, the pope wants to express his "closeness of spirit and fatherly support” to everyone in the affected area.
Pope Francis

Pope authorizes new decrees of heroic virtues for four potential saints

October 11, 2016. Pope Francis authorized the Congregation for the Causes of Saints to promulgate the decree of heroic virtues to four people, who are being investigated by the Church for possible sainthood. The decrees were given to the following "Servants of God:”
Pope Francis

Pope Francis rejects death penalty on Twitter: #NoDeathPenalty

October 10, 2016. The Pope has has given his support via Twitter to the World Day Against the Death Penalty. The following message can be read in each of his nine accounts, in their respective languages: "Punishment should necessarily include hope! #NoDeathPenalty.”
Pope Francis

Pope Francis announces Synod about youth and vocation

October 6, 2016. It will be held in 2018 under the name "Youth, faith, and vocational discernment.” Preparations for the second Synod of bishops convened by Pope Francis are well underway.

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 warns about the vulnerability of migrant and refugee children


"Child Migrants, the Vulnerable and the Voiceless.” This is the powerful title of the pope's message ahead of the World Day of Migrants and Refugees, next January 15.

Pope Francis wants to underline the tragedy of forced migration, which affects one particular group more than any other: children and youth.

President, Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants
"Children, unlike adults, do not have a voice. Children do not have power. How can they fend for themselves? This is a problem within the problem of migration. Precisely, the pope has wanted to underline this issue, so that our consciences open up to it, and we might be more sensitive to it.

The pope asks that "every possible measure to guarantee the protection and safety of child migrants” be taken, because they might fall into the hands of sexual or labor exploiters, or even might be recruited as children soldiers. 

The war in Syria, Yemen, or Afghanistan, ISIS in Iraq, instability in Libya, Ethiopia or Eritrea have brought on a migratory wave of similar proportions to that caused by World War II. Half of the 65 million refugees in the world today are children.

President, Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants
"These are scary numbers, unknown to most people, firstly, because people do not want to know, and secondly, because newspapers do not talk about it.

So far this year, more than 3,500 people have died in the Mediterranean, many of them children, trying to reach European soil.The international community, however, looks the other way. In this message, Pope Francis is asking leaders to commit to "eliminating the conflicts and violence that force people to flee.”

President, Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants
"Many countries in the European Union, not all, but some of them, have been very selfish, wrapped up in themselves. What have they done? Instead of trying to take in people, they have built walls. They told refugees. "Leave!” "Where?,” they asked. And the answer has been "I don't know, it is none of my business.” This is not how problems are solved.

That is why Pope Francis asks countries to favor integration instead of barring the entrance of these children and their families, and sending them back to their homes. He reminds people that "no one is a stranger in the Christian community,” because "the phenomenon of migration is a part of salvation history.”