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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.
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Pope accepts the resignation of Cardinal O'Brien
March 20, 2015. The Pope has accepted the resignation of "the rights and prerogatives of the cardinal" from Cardinal Keith Michael Patrick O'Brien, Archbishop Emeritus of Edinburgh.

What's expected from the Pope's visit to South Korea?

2014-04-14

Pope Francis has officially announced that he will visit South Korea in August. It will be for Asian Youth Day, where thousands of young adults from that very country, will come together to learn more about their faith and how to live it on a daily basis. 

FR. DON JONG-SU JOHN KIM
Rector, Pontifical Korean College (Rome) 
"It's not easy for Koreans to find stability right now or even employment. So even though not all of them may go to church, they're all looking for a role model and a Church that understands them.” 

About 10 percent of the population is Catholic, making it the third most popular faith in South Korea. First is Buddhism, followed by protestant denominations. Fr. Kim says all of them are eager to welcome Pope Francis for the first time. 

FR. DON JONG-SU JOHN KIM
Rector, Pontifical Korean College (Rome) 
"Korea is looking forward to this visit. In fact, Koreans are hoping he will promote peace and justice in the country, but also internationally between North and South Korea.” 

As part of the visit, the Pope will preside over the beatification ceremony of South Korea's first martyr, Pablo Yun Ji -chung. He will be beatified along with 123 of his late colleagues who gave their life for their faith. 

FR. DON JONG-SU JOHN KIM
Rector, Pontifical Korean College (Rome)
"They first introduced Catholicism in Korea because they thought it was a type of Western science, or topic, so to speak. But once they started studying it, they found their faith.” 

In the past 25 years,  the number of Catholics in South Korea has increased from three million to roughly five million people. 


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