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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.

It's always Christmas in this Rome shop

2014-08-21

It's summer in the Eternal city, but even now this store is full of holiday cheer. It's called "Sempre Natale,” a Christmas oasis in the midst of the Roman heat. It's open year-round, and sells handmade, crystal ornaments from all over Europe.

MARCO ROMANI
Sempre Natale
"Many tourists and also many Romans have Christmas ornament collections. To me, it didn't seem enough to just find them during the holidays. Because of that, we offer the possibility to find them year round.”

Visitors will find all types of ornaments, from the standard to the extravagant. They include replicas of vintage decorations from the 1940's, to superheroes; from fairy tales characters to food shapes. Their customers reflect this diversity.

MARCO ROMANI
Sempre Natale
"We have all kids of shoppers. Collects will find limited edition ornaments, signed and numbered, for their large collections. Everyday people will find ornaments that remind them of their childhood, of when they were kids, next to their grandfather's tree. So they buy them more out of affection and nostalgia.”

According to Romani, the tradition to put up Christmas trees has increased recently. The tree, he said, represents a line of continuity between past, present and future.

MARCO ROMANI
Sempre Natale
"Each person, in some say, must find a piece of themselves reflected on that tree. And since we're so diverse from one another, each person wants to represent themselves with a different object.”

The most popular items at this shop are the ones that symbolize Rome, Italy and the Vatican. Although Romani said that ultimately, the figure that brings everyone together is St. Nick.


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