‘Soap opera’ love isn’t true love, pope says

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — True love comes from God and is expressed through his mercy and forgiveness, not through sentimental expressions that can easily vanish, Pope Francis said. Although many people use the word ‘love,’ “when used, it is not known what it exactly means,” the pope said in his homily Jan. 8 during his…

Video messages of pope’s prayer intentions will hit social media

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Pope Francis will deliver his monthly prayer intentions on video over social media as part of a Jesuit-run global prayer network. The new video messages, featuring the pope asking for prayers and action on various challenges facing the world today, will begin Jan. 6, the feast of the Epiphany of the…

Canada on track to welcome 25,000 Syrian refugees, says ambassador

AMMAN, Jordan (CNS) — As a cautious world rang in the New Year with concerns over terrorism and security, Catholics in Canada were continuing to welcome Syrian refugees to their newly adopted homeland. The Canadian target of accepting 25,000 Syrian refugees by late February “is well in hand, and we should meet it with no…

Pope erects Syro-Malankara eparchy for U.S., Canada

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Pope Francis erected a new Syro-Malankara eparchy for the United States and Canada. The pope also named Bishop Thomas Eusebios Naickamparambil, who served as the apostolic exarch for Syro-Malankaran Catholics in the United States, as its first bishop. The new diocese is called the Eparchy of St. Mary, Queen of Peace,…

Angelus: Church invites us to welcome the Word of salvation

(Vatican Radio) At St Peter’s Square, Pope Francis lead the faithful in the recitation of the Angelus on the first Sunday of the new year. Speaking on the day’s Gospel, the Holy Father noted the dramatic contrast between God’s gift of love in the Incarnation, and man’s failure to receive Him. The solemn opening of…

Pope Francis: Angelus appeal for peace

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis renewed his calls for peace and goodwill throughout the Earth on Friday, New Year’s Day, the Solemnity of the Mother of God and the World Day of Peace. The Holy Father’s appeal came at the Angelus prayer with pilgrims and visitors gathered in St. Peter’s Square after Mass in St. Peter’s…

Pope Francis: homily for Mass on Feast of Mother of God

Pope Francis delivered the homily at Mass on New Year’s Day, the Solemnity of the Mother of God, in St. Peter’s Basilica. Below, please find the full text of the official English translation of his prepared remarks. ****************************************** Salve, Mater Misericordiae! With this invocation we turn to the Blessed Virgin Mary in the Roman Basilica…

Mercy enlightens past year, gives hope for new year, pope says

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — The gift of mercy is a light that helps Christians reflect on the past year and radiates hope at the start of the new year, Pope Francis said. While retracing the events of 2015 may recall moments of both joy and sorrow, it also offers a moment to understand the presence…