Pope Francis names French cardinal as new Camerlengo
December 20, 2014. Cardinal Jean Louis Tauran is the new Camerlengo of the Roman Catholic Church. So he replaces cardinal Tarcisio Bertone (80).
Tauran will take care of the property and revenues of the Holy See during a sede vacante.
December 12, 2014. Pope Francis has appointed Msgr. Vicente Jimenez Zamora as the new Archbishop of Zaragoza, Spain. Up until now, he served as the Bishop of the Diocese of Santander. In Ecuador, Fr. Adelio Pasqualotto has been nominated as the new Vicariate Apostolic of Napo. Pope Francis also appointed Rev. Fr. Pietro Bovati, as the new Secretary of the Pontifical Biblical Commission.
Vatican releases new questionnaire on the Synod on the Family
December 9, 2014. The Vatican has published a new questionnaire containing 46 questions pertaining to the family and the modern day challenges it faces. It’s meant to be a further reflection for the second phase of the Synod on the Family, which will take place in October 2015. The questions are divided in three sections. In the following days, it will be distributed to many groups, including Episcopal Conferences, Eastern Church and Curia Departments.
The Jesuits to start new General Congregation on October 2016
December 9, 2014. The General Superior of the Society of Jesus, Fr. Adolfo Nicolas Pachon, has called a new General Congregation. This assembly, which will include representatives from all over the world, will start on October 2, 2016. In a letter, Fr. Pachon called on all Jesuits to take part in this "serious process of spiritual discernment" on which the future and mission of the Society relies.
New Archbishop of Kenya
December 9, 2014. Pope Francis appointed Msgr. Martin Musonde Kivuva as new Archbishop of Mombasa (Kenya). He previously served as bishop of the diocese of Machakos (Kenya).
Also, Adolfo Ramon Canecin was appointed coadjutor bishop of the diocese of Goya (Argentina).
Community of Sant'Egidio reelects its president
December 9, 2014. Marco Impagliazzo has been reelected as president of the Community of Sant'Egidio by an assembly of 220 delegates from around the world.
Colombian bishop, resigns
December 1, 2014. Pope Francis accepted the resignation of Msgr. Luis Alberto Parra Mora, Bishop of Mocoa-Sibundoy (Colombia). He is 70 years old.
First message of Pope Francis in Turkey
November 28, 2014. Pope Francis signed the so-called Golden Book at Ataturk's Mausoleum in Ankara. There he wrote this message: "I express my sincerest good wishes so that Turkey, the natural bridge between two Continents, may not only be a crossroad, but also a place of encounter, dialogue and peaceful coexistence among men and women of good will of every culture, ethnicity and religion."
Pope on Haiti
November 25, 2014. Five years have passed since the deadly earthquake devastated the island of Haiti. In light of this anniversary, Pope Francis has called for a Vatican meeting to take place. The goal is for the Church to look into what can be done to help out victims and the country as it tries to re-build itself.
Cardinal Robert Sarah, new prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship
November 24, 2014. Pope Francis has named Cardinal Robert Sarah as new prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship. Up until recently, he served as the President of the Pontifical Council Cor Unum.
Sarah, 69, a native of Conakry, Guinea, also held a prominent role in the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples.
He is taking over the post previously held by Cardinal Antonio Cañizares, who was recently named Archbishop of Valencia, Spain.
Pope Francis kicked off his first full month as Pope by honoring one of his predecessors. On April 2, he prayed before the tomb of John Paul II at St. Peter's Basilica, on the anniversary of his death.
The Pope also prayed before the tombs of John XXIII and Pius X. Interestingly, next April, Pope Francis will canonize both John Paul II and John XXIII.
A week later and 26 days after his election, Pope Francis celebrated his Installation Mass as the Bishop of Rome. Thousands of people waited to see him outside the Basilica of St. John Lateran, the official see for the Diocese of Rome.
During the homily, the Pope started talking about one of the main topics of his pontificate: mercy.
POPE FRANCIS (April 8)
"In my personal life, I've seen the merciful face of God and His patience so many times. I've also seen many people who courageously go to Jesus' wounds and say: 'Lord, here I am. Accept my poverty. Cover my sins with your wounds, clean them with your blood.' I've seen how God welcome them, consoles them, cleans them and loves them.”
After the Mass, he opened the papal rooms at the Basilica, which had been closed since Benedict XVI stepped down.
Over the next few weeks, the world would begin to discover the Pope's unique personality. The passionate soccer fan greeted his favorite soccer team after a general audience.
"...And to the group form the Athletic Club of San Lorenzo of Almagro, from Buenos Aires. That is very important.”
The next day, he traded his papal hat with an American couple after speaking to the Papal Foundation.
Halfway through the month, Pope Francis took the time to greet Benedict XVI on his special day. He called him at Castel Gandolfo and celebrated Mass in his honor.
POPE FRANCIS (April 16)
"Today is the birthday of Benedict XVI. We offer this Mass in prayer for him, so that the Lord can be with him, comfort him and console him.”
Benedict XVI turned 86. It was his first birthday as Pope emeritus.
Another highlight from this month that showed off the Pope's personality was this tight embrace with Ecuador's President Rafael Correa, at the Vatican.
But it wasn't his only audience with world leaders. He also met with the UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon, as well as the executives from Mozambique, Spain, Madagascar, Italy and Israel.
In fact, it was the latter, President Shimon Peres, that invited Pope Francis to visit the Holy Land in 2014.
"I am waiting for you in Jerusalem, and not just me, but all the people from Israel.”
It was the first of several invitations Pope Francis would receive from political and religious leaders in the region. As the 2013 comes to an end, the possibility he'll take up that invitation is looking more likely.