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Papal Trip to Cuba?
April 17, 2015. The Vatican's spokesperson has announced that Pope Francis is considering a trip to Cuba. If the visit takes place it would be before or after his trip to the U.S in September. The process however, is still in its beginning phases, so no official decision has been made. 
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Dates of papal trip to Latin America released
April 16, 2015. The Vatican has announced the dates of Pope's upcoming trip to Latin America. He will visit Ecuador from July 6 to 8. After, he will be in Bolivia from July 8 to 10. He will then go to Paraguay until July 12. 
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Pope's Message for World Day of Prayer for Vocations
April 14, 2015. In his message for the event, which will be held on April 26, Pope Francis considers the meaning of "vocation.” He writes that it means to respond to God's call. That is, "allowing him to help us leave ourselves and our false security behind” so that we can find Jesus Christ, "the origin and destiny of our life and our happiness.”

The title of the message is: "Exodus, a fundamental experience of vocation.”

Read the full text here.
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New vicar apostolic in Venezuela and bishop in India

April 7, 2015. Pope Francis has appointed Ernesto José Romero Rivas, O.F.M. to be Vicar Apostolic of Tucupita (Venezuela). The Pope has also appointed Vincent Aind to be Bishop of Bagdogra (India).

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New Prefect in the Congregation for Catholic Education
March 31, 2015. Pope Francis has appointed Cardinal Giuseppe Versaldi, as the new Prefect of the Congregation for Catholic Education. He also also appointed Cardinal Rainer Maria Woelki as a member of the Administration of the Patrimony of the Apostolic See. 
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New bishop in Mozambique
March 30, 2015. The Pope has appointed Alberto Vera Aréjula, a Spanish missionary, to be Auxiliary Bishop of Xai-Xai in Mozambique.
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New Eparchy and new Exarchate in India
March 26, 2015. The Pope has created the Eparchy of St. John Chrysostom in Gurgaon of the Syro-Malankara Church (India). He has also appointed its first bishop, Jacob Barnabas Aerath. Additionally, Pope Francis created the new Apostolic Exarchate of St. Ephrem of Khadki of the Syro-Malankara Church (India). He appointed the first Exarch, Bishop Thomas Mar Anthonios Valiyavilayil.
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New bishop in Ecuador
March 24, 2015. Pope Francis appointed Victor Bertram Wick Enzler to be bishop of Santo Domingo (Ecuador). Until now, he served as auxiliary bishop of Guayaquil, also in Ecuador.

What's in a Papal Shield? A look into the art of designing a 'Coat of Arms'

2014-03-15

These designs are much more than just designs. They're full of symbolism and they're also  essential when it comes to making a Papal shield

That's why Cardinal Andrea Cordero Lanza de  Montezemolo published a manual that makes it all easier to understand, including the language that's used when making a Pope's Coat of Arms. 

CARD. ANDREA CORDERO LANZA DI MONTEZEMOLO
Author, "Manual de Heráldica Eclesiástica”
"I decided to include some information to help out those who want to design a coat of arms, so that it's carried out correctly. With the appropriate language and techniques.” 

It's a topic he knows all too well. The Cardinal designed Benedict XVI's coat of arms. He said he  showed the Pope eight sketches, eventually he chose the one that looked just right. 

Even though Benedict XVI is a conservative, as Pope he was actually the first to alter part of the tradition. He opted for a mitre, instead of a tiara and he added the pallium. 

CARD. ANDREA CORDERO LANZA DI MONTEZEMOLO
Author, "Manual de Heráldica Eclesiástica”
"Yes, I did it. He called me and asked me to do it. So we looked into it very carefully.”

When Benedict XVI resigned, he thought it would be a good idea to change the design, for one that suited his new role as the Pope Emeritus. 

He thanked him for the gesture, but in the end he refused any alterations, keeping instead the design he had during his pontificate. 


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