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Pope's Schedule
April 15, 2014. On Tuesday, Pope Francis met with Msgr. Charbel Georges Merhi, from the congreation of the Missionary Lebanese Maronites, and bishop emeritus of San Charbel in Buenos Aires. He also met with Msgr. Marcello Semeraro, bishop of Albano, and secreatry of the Council of Cardinals.
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Papal Appointments
April 15, 2014. Pope Francis accepted the resignation of Msgr. Egidio Nkaijanabwo, and appointed Acquirino Francis Kibira as the new bishop of the dioecese of Kasese (Uganda). He also named Msgr. Peter Kayode Odetoyinbo as the bishop of the diocese of Abeokuta (Nigeria).
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Pope send message, prayers to fire victims in Chile
April 14, 2014. Pope Francis sent out a telegram today to the Bishop of Valparaiso Chile, where he expresses his condolences for the victims killed in a wildfire.
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Pope's Schedule
April 14, 2014. Pope Francis will meet today with Cardinal Leonardo Sandri, Prefect of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches. Afterwards, he will receive Cardinal Agostino Vallini, Vicar General of Rome's diocese. He will also have an audiencie at the Vatican's Clementine Hall with a delegation of the Pontifical College "Leoniano" of Anagni.
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Papal Appointments
April 8, 2014. Pope Francis accepted the resignation of Msgr. Nicola De Angelis, and appointed Msgr. William Terrence McGrattan as the new bishop of the Diocese of Peterborough (Canada).
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Pope to make two summer trips within Italy
April 7, 2014. In between his two international trips this year, the Vatican announced Pope Francis will visit two Italian cities during the summer. On June 21, he will travel to the diocese of Cassano all'Jonio in the region of Calabria. Then on July 5, the Pope will visit the diocese of Campobasso and Isernia in the Molise region.
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Pope's Schedule
April 7, 2014. On Monday morning, Pope Francis met with Card. Fernando Filoni, the prefect for the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples. Then, he welcomed Msgr. Francis Assissi Chullikatt, Permanent Observer to the United Nations and the Organization for American States. At 11AM, the Pope welcomed the remaining group of bishops from Tanzania, on their 'ad limina visit,' and addressed the entire group. Pope Francis met at 12:45 with the organizing committee for World Youth Day 2013 in Rio de Janeiro. His last event was at 4PM; he welcomed King Abdullah from Jordania at Casa Santa Marta.
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Pope's Schedule
April 4, 2014. Pope Francis met with Msgr. Adolfo Tito Yllana, apostolic nuncio to the Democratic Republic of Congo, followed by Msgr. Erwin Kräutler, bishop of Xingu (Brazil), and the bishops from Tanzania on their 'ad limina' visit to the Vatican.
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Papal Appointments
April 4, 2014. Pope Francis appointed Msgr. Michel Aupetit as the new bishop of the diocese of Nanterre (France). He also named Fr. Pierre-Yves Michel as the bishop of Valence (France), as well as Fr. Stefan Oster as the bishop of Passau (Germany).
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Pope's Schedule
April 3, 2014. On Thursday morning, at 10:30AM Pope Francis met with José Maria Pereira Neves, the prime minister of Cape Verde. Half an hour later, he welcomed Card. Angelo Amato, prefect for the Congregation of the Causes of Saints. At 11:30, the Pope met and addressed with the bishops from Rwanda, on their 'ad limina' visit to Rome. Then on Thursday afternoon, at 3PM, he will meet with Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh, at the papal office in Paul VI Hall.
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Papal Appointments
April 2, 2014. Pope Francis named Arch. Franco Coppolo as the apostolic nuncio to Chad. Up until now, Msgr. Coppola was the apostolic nuncio to the Central African Republic.
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Pope's Schedule
March 24, 2014. On Monday, at 10:30AM, Pope Francis will meet with Card. Fernando Filoni, prefect for the Congregation for the Evangelization of Poeples. At 11:15, he will welcome Guinean bishops on their "ad limina apostolorum" visit. Then, at 12:15, the Pope will address the Plenary Assembly for the Pontifical Council for Health Care Workers (for Health Pastoral Care).
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Vatican signs on to Global Freedom Network, to fight trafficking
March 17, 2014. The Vatican signed an agreement to join the Global Freedom Network, and inter-religious group aimed at stemming modern slavery and human trafficking by 2020. The network's presentation took place on Monday at the Vatican Press Office, and featured the participation of delegates on behalf of Archbishop of Canterburry Justin Wellby, the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar, the Pontifical Academy for Sciences, as well as the president for the Walk Free Foundation. In addition to prayer, the network will also raise awareness on slavery and trafficking, and work with world governments to help end these practices.

Pope Francis meets with family of an Argentine death row inmate

2014-02-06

During his General Audience, Pope Francis greeted an Argentine couple, whose son sits behind bars as a death row inmate in Texas. After 17 years behind bars, and exhausting legal options, their hoping Pope Francis can save their son's life.


LIDIA GUERRERO

Mother
"I believe it's important because he's a Pope that takes interest in the problems of the world. And he has a lot of influence because the world listens to him.”


A Texas court convicted Victor Saldaño of killing another man in 1995. His trial resulted in a death sentence. But in 2002, the U.S. Supreme Court struck it down, saying the testimony against Saldaño was tainted by racial discrimination.

  

JUAN CARLOS VEGAS
Family lawyer

"By any international standard, that would have been enough to set Saldaño free. Instead, he faces a new trial.”


The second trial ended like the first, a jury sentenced Saldaño to the death penalty. At that point, after seven years on death row, his family and lawyer argued he developed mental health problems, and that he should be released.

  

The state of Texas has shown little signs of changing its mind. A lawsuit filed against the U.S. government at the Inter-American Court of Human Rights is also stalled. With the Catholic Church's vocal opposition to the death penalty, they turned to Pope Francis.

 

LIDIA GUERRERO
Mother

"I hope, truthfully, that he asks for clemency on behalf of my son, so that he's not given the death sentence.”


Saldaño's mother said the Pope did not commit to anything when she brought up her request. But with his constant emphasis on mercy, she's hopeful he'll take action.

 

Giving her additional hope is that fact that Texas hasn't scheduled Saldaño's execution. But after 17 years, it's not much comfort. Until, and if, the Pope intervenes, she says she keeps her bags ready, to go her son's side, at a moment's notice.

 


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