Vatican urges return to in-person Mass as soon as possible

VATICAN CITY (AP) — The Vatican said Saturday it was “necessary and urgent” to return to in-person Masses as soon as anti-coronavirus measures permit. The head of the Vatican’s liturgy office, Cardinal Robert Sarah, said in a letter to bishops conferences that virtual liturgies, while useful, were no replacement for the real thing. He said […]

Pope set to make first trip since pandemic to saint’s town

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis is next month set to make what would be his first visit outside Rome since Italy was put under lockdown in early March when it became the first country in Europe to feel the full brunt of the coronavirus pandemic. The pope is to journey to Assisi, the birthplace […]

Pope: Gossiping is “plague worse than COVID”

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis said Sunday that gossiping is a “plague worse than COVID” that is seeking to divide the Catholic Church. Francis strayed from his prepared text to double down on his frequent complaint about gossiping within church communities and even within the Vatican bureaucracy. Francis didn’t give specifics during his weekly […]

Pope prays for Lebanon during 1st public audience in months

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis described solidarity as the way out of the coronavirus pandemic crisis as he held his first public audience in nearly six months Wednesday after a pause brought on by Italy’s outbreak. “The current pandemic has highlighted our interdependence. We are all linked to each other, for better or for […]

Pope seeks to ‘liberate’ Virgin Mary from the Mafia

ROME (AP) — Pope Francis is giving his blessing to a new Vatican think tank that is seeking to prevent the Mafia and organized crime groups from exploiting the image of the Virgin Mary for their own illicit ends. The Vatican’s Pontifical Marian Academy launched the think tank Friday at a conference titled “Liberating Mary […]

With Vatican FM in Belarus, pope urges respect for protests

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis urged political leaders to listen to protesters and heed their calls for political and social change, an apparent reference to protests in Belarus against the country’s authoritarian president. Francis didn’t mention Belarus or any country in his appeal Sunday during his noontime prayer but his comments came as the […]

Pope uses mask, sanitizer as he appeals for public health

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis wore a face mask and used hand sanitizer Wednesday as he appealed for the faithful to look out for the health of others as well as themselves during the coronavirus pandemic. Francis took off the mask as his car pulled into the San Damaso courtyard inside the Apostolic Palace, […]

Priest named to be bishop by pope resigns after abuse probe

VATICAN CITY (AP) — A priest recently tapped by Pope Francis to be made a bishop for a Minnesota diocese has resigned after an allegation of sexual abuse of a minor surfaced before he could take up his post. The Vatican announced without giving details on Monday that Francis had accepted the resignation of the […]

Vatican: Assisted suicide, euthanasia “intrinsically evil”

ROME (AP) — The Vatican on Tuesday reaffirmed its stance that euthanasia and assisted suicide are “intrinsically evil,” and told priests they should minister to those contemplating such deaths to try to change their minds but shouldn’t be present at the end if they don’t. The Vatican’s doctrine office, the Congregation for the Doctrine of […]

Greek PM demands more EU help to handle homeless migrants

LESBOS, Greece (AP) — Greece’s prime minister demanded Sunday that the European Union take a greater responsibility for managing migration into the bloc, as Greek authorities promised that 12,000 migrants and asylum-seekers left homeless after fire gutted an overcrowded camp would be moved shortly to a new tent city. Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis blamed […]

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