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.
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.
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.
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).
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.
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.
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.
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.
Thundering applause welcomed Pope Francis inside the Vatican's Clementine Hall. He met with bishops, priests and seminarians from the Pontifical Leonian College, the seminary for the Lazio region.
"We are here to gather courage like the Apostles, and assure you our total and unconditional loyalty.”
During his remarks he talked about the four pillars needed within the formation of priests: prayer, study, fraternity and apostolic life.
"A strong spiritual life; a serious intellectual life: community life, and, lastly, an apostolic life, in no particular order. All four are important. If one is missing, the formation is no good.”
Pope Francis went on to talk about the meaning of becoming a priest, a "good shepherd.” Citing the Apostles, he talked about courage in preaching, mercy through the Sacraments, and constant prayer. The one thing a priest should not be, the Pope said, is a career bureaucrat.
"We have so, so many priest who are stuck on this path. It pains me that they are not fulfilled as priests. They behave like officials, like bureaucrats, and that is not good for the Church. I urge you, be careful not to fall on this path.”
The Pope added that there is no room for mediocrity in the discipleship of Jesus Christ, and that if a person is not up to the task of becoming a "man of prayer” and the "voice of Christ,” they should consider finding another path. He closed by giving seminarians another piece of advice.
"Russian mystics said that in moments of spiritual turbulence, one needs to take refuge under the mantle of the Holy Mother of God. Never leave it! Cover yourself with Her mantle.”
Near the end, he also thanked the seminarians that came to the Vatican on foot from the seminary, located less than 40 miles south of Rome.