Silence and indifference to migrant crisis lead to complicity, pope says

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Indifference to the crises and tragedies today’s migrants and refugees are facing lead to complicity when people remain silent or refuse to act, Pope Francis said. Jesus’ call to welcome the stranger and show mercy is clear, the pope said in a message released at the Vatican Oct. 1. “Yet there…

Protesters at New York gas storage plant arrested while reading encyclical

READING, N.Y. (CNS) — Accompanied by oversized replica of Pope Francis’ encyclical “Laudato Si’,” former Catholic seminarian Paul Flansburg took his place on the line with 18 others in a human blockade. Their goal Aug. 18 was to stop business as usual at a natural gas and liquefied petroleum gas storage facility operated by Houston-based…

Georgia executes Kelly Renee Gissendaner

(Vatican Radio) The state of Georgia in the United States has executed Kelly Renee Gissendaner for killing her husband in 1997, the first woman executed in the state in 70 years. The 47-year old woman sang Amazing Grace in the execution chamber, until she was given the lethal injection, which led to her death at…

Vatican refuses comment on reports Kentucky clerk met pope

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — The Vatican has refused to comment on reports that while in Washington, Pope Francis briefly met with Kim Davis, the county clerk from Kentucky who was jailed for refusing to issue marriage licenses. Davis, the elected clerk of Rowan County, initially refused to grant marriage licenses to gay couples and then…

Serra canonization should awaken mission spirit, says head of Extension

WASHINGTON (CNS) — For Catholic Extension, the canonization of St. Junipero Serra Sept. 23 marked a renewal of the 110-year-old organization’s help to the marginalized. “We have to awaken our mission spirit in the United States,” said Father Jack Wall, president of Catholic Extension, in a phone interview with Catholic News Service. “You can’t do…

Pope has been invited to Canada, but Vatican says nothing confirmed

PHILADELPHIA (CNS) — Now that Pope Francis’ trip to the United States has ended, many wonder when he will visit Canada, as he has been invited to visit Montreal in 2017. Asked about this possibility, Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, Vatican spokesman, said there is no plan to visit Canada at the moment. “I understand your…

Theme for 2016 communications day to focus on mercy, dialogue

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — For World Communications Day 2016, Pope Francis has chosen the theme “Communication and Mercy: A fruitful encounter.” As the church celebrates the extraordinary Holy Year of Mercy, which begins Dec. 8, the pope also wanted to invite deeper reflection on the link between communication and mercy, said a statement from the…