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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

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.

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 to young people in Krakow: Are you looking for empty thrills or to find fulfillment?


It was another intense afternoon for the Pope in Krakow.

First, he received the Krakow authorities who paid him homage by handing him the keys to the city.

He was then transported to Bonia Park with nothing less than a Krakow ecological tram. Thus, he waved at pilgrims for about 20 minutes, and was accompanied by some young people with disabilities inside the tram.

Upon arrival at Bonia Park, the party had already begun. One million young people received Pope Francis with all their enthusiasm.

The archbishop of Krakow thanked the Pope for his presence in the homeland of John Paul II.

"Thank you on behalf of all young people and all present. Thank you."

Chosen representatives from each continent gave the Pope a pilgrim kit, just as each participant was given upon arrival. Then they devoted a colorful dance festival from around the world to Pope Francis.

There was a montage of saints from across the centuries to explain to the youth that holiness has no time limit or age and don't expect to be an adult to begin to search for it.

After reading the Gospel, Pope Francis spoke, urging young people to have a merciful heart.

"Are you able to dream? When a heart is open and prepared to dream, there is also room for mercy. There is also room to be close to those who suffer, those who want peace in their heart or who lack the necessities of life or that most beautiful thing, faith. Let us say this word: Mercy. Say together this word: Mercy. Once again, so the whole world hears you: Mercy.”

He told them it pains him when he meets young people who feel no desire to live or seek happiness in dark ways. So he invited them not to be fooled by this lie that life has no value. 

"Dear friends, we are gathered here, however, to help one another other, because we do not want to be robbed of the best of ourselves. We don't want to be robbed of our energy, our joy, or our dreams by fond illusions."

To keep a strong passion for life, the Pope recommended something to them that cannot be bought or sold.

"Dear friends, I ask you: Are you looking for empty thrills in life? Or do you want to feel a power that can give you a lasting sense of life and fulfillment? Empty thrills or the power of grace? What do you want: Empty thrills or the power of fulfillment? What do you want? I can hardly hear you... Define fulfillment: to gain new strength, there is a way. It is a response that cannot be bought or sold. It is not a thing or an object. It is a person and He is alive and His name is Jesus Christ. A round of applause for the Lord."

The huge party ended with a prayer in which the Pope invited young people to build bridges and tear down walls. He asked for them to help the poor and the abandoned and to embrace, without fear, those who come from another culture. He told them to listen to the elders and asked all them to live mercifully, so that their lives are lived to fulfillment.