What's this? / Report Bad Ads
Latest News
Pope Francis

Pope Francis' complete schedule for Colombia trip

June 23, 2017. He will go to Colombia September 6-11.

Bruno Marie Duffé, new secretary of the Department for Integral Development

June 16, 2017. Thepope has named French priest Bruno Marie Duffé, from Lyon, number two of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development. He will be in charge of one of the key offices in the Vatican Curia.
Pope Francis

Angela Merkel to meet with pope on June 17

June 9, 2017. The Vatican has confirmed that on Saturday, June 17, German Chancellor Angela Merkel will meet with Pope Francis. Both have previously met in Rome in May 2016, February 2015 and May 2013, two months after Pope Francis was elected pontiff.
Pope Francis

Pope Francis to meet with Venezuelan bishops on June 8

June 5, 2017. Pope Francis will meet with Venezuelan bishops next Thursday to discuss the situation their country is facing.

New secretary of the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life

May 31, 2017. The Brazilian priest Alexandre Awi Mello, the National Director of Brazil's Schönstatt Movement, will serve as the new secretary. He was born Rio de Janeiro in 1971, and ordained a priest in 2001.
Pope Francis

Pope sends condolences and solidarity to Cairo after bus attack

May 26, 2017. Secretary of State, Pietro Parolin, wrote a letter to His Excellency Abdel Fattah Al Sisi after the bus attack Friday in Cairo, which left close to 30 Coptic Christians dead, including children, and many others injured.

Pope in Al-Azhar: Violence is the negation of every authentic religious expression


With this round of applause Pope Francis was welcomed at the University of Al-Azhar.

This university is the main theological reference point for the Sunni Muslim world, who make up 80 percent of the world's Muslims.

The great imam and rector of the center, Ahmed Al-Tayeb, accompanied the pope in the auditorium. Both gave a speech to the participants of the International Peace Conference taking place in the university. Among the attendees were religious leaders of various denominations and Muslim representatives, as well as students and teachers at the center.

The great imam asked for everyone to stand for a moment of silence as a tribute to all the victims of terrorism.

In his speech, Ahmed Al-Tayeb explained that Islam is not a religion of terrorism and thanked Christian communities for supporting them against those who accuse Muslims of being terrorists. After these words, the pope and the Imam exchanged a hug.

Pope Francis, who the Muslims have called the 'pope of peace,' spoke next.

"Al Salamò Alaikum!"

First, he thanked "his brother," the great Imam, for inviting him. In his speech, the pope strongly condemned the instrumentalization of religions. He also invited religious leaders to defend true religion.

"Violence is the negation of every authentic religious expression. As religious leaders, we are called, therefore, to unmask the violence that masquerades as purported sanctity and is based more on the "absolutizing” of selfishness than on authentic openness to the Absolute."

Pope Francis also condemned the violence that is exercised in the name of God, a perversion that he described as the "idolatrous falsification of God."

"We have an obligation to denounce violations of human dignity and human rights, to expose attempts to justify every form of hatred in the name of religion, and to condemn these attempts as idolatrous caricatures of God: Holy is his name, he is the God of peace, God salaam."

The pope was interrupted by applause on several occasions. One example was when he explained that religious leaders not only have to unmask evil, but also promote peace.

"Our task is that of praying for one another, imploring from God the gift of peace, encountering one another, engaging in dialogue and promoting harmony in the spirit of cooperation and friendship."

Before concluding, Pope Francis also asked for facts and not just good intentions for peace. That is why he once again denounced the trafficking of arms.

"What is needed today are peacemakers, not constructors of violence. What is needed today are peacemakers, not formenters of conflict; firefighters and not arsonists; preachers of reconciliation and not instigators of destruction."

At the end of his speech, the pope and the Imam shared another hug and all those attending the meeting roared in another round of applause for the Bishop of Rome.