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Raúl Castro to meet with Pope
May 6, 2015. Cuban President Raúl Castro will meet privately with Pope Francis on Sunday morning, May 10. Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi  said, "President Raúl Castro has publicly thanked the Pope for his role in fostering the rapprochement between Cuba and the United States of America."
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New bishop in Texas
April 23, 2015. Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of Msgr. David Eugene Fellhauer, Bishop of Victoria in Texas (United States). In his place, he has appointed the Rev. Brendan Cahill. 
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Appointments
April 22, 2015. The Pope has named Eduardo Pinheiro da Silva, S.D.B. as Bishop of Jaboticabal (Brazil). Until now, he was auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Campo Grande.

The Vatican also announced that on April 21 the Pope appointed Joseph F. Naumann to be Apostolic Administrator "sede vacante" of the Diocese of Kansas City-Saint Joseph (United States). Until a new bishop is appointed, Naumann will oversee the diocese. He is currently the Metropolitan Archbishop of Kansas City in Kansas.
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Kansas Bishop Robert Finn resigns years after conviction
April 21, 2015. Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of American Bishop, Robert W. Finn. In 2012 the Kansas Bishop was convicting of not reporting a diocesan priest to police. The priest had a series of pornographic material in his computer. 

He is the first American Bishop to resign for not acting swiftly in dealing with cases of sexual abuse. 

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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).

Vatican presents its report before UN Commission on Torture

2014-05-05

A Vatican delegation spoke before a UN Committee on the Convention Against Torture at its offices in Geneva. It's a convention where the Vatican City State is represented primarily as a country, not a Church. 

The Committee asked the Vatican delegation more information about its handling of sex abuse cases against minors

As the Holy See's representative, Msgr. Silvano Tomasi said that the Vatican City State does not have jurisdiction over Catholics who reside outside its territory. He said, that rather, they fall under the national laws and authorities of their respective nations. 

In addition to questions about how the Vatican is dealing with  allegations of sexual abuse by clergy, the panel of experts asked the Vatican about its prisons cells.  Benedict XVI's former butler, who was jailed and found guilty of releasing the former Pope's personal documents, complained about his prison cell being too small and without enough light. 

The UN delegation also asked Msgr. Tomasi about the Vatican's opinion on abortions  that are carried out in poor conditions, when the life of the mother is at risk. 

Tuesday will mark the second meeting between the Holy See and the UN Commission. At that point, the Vatican representative is expected to respond to that set of questions.  

The meeting is part of a regular session that is required of all member states that are part of the International Convention against Torture. The Vatican City State joined in 2002.



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