Shrine profile – Assumption Chapel

Pope Francis declared an Extraordinary Year of Mercy, beginning Dec. 8, 2015, and ending Nov. 20, 2016. Bishop Donald Kettler has designated places of pilgrimage and shrines within the St. Cloud Diocese for this Holy Year, inviting the faithful to experience grace and reconciliation as they rediscover joy in the mercy of God. A pilgrimage…

Festival of Forgiveness called a ‘smashing success’

By Kristi Anderson The Visitor For the last few years, Pope Francis has celebrated “24 hours for the Lord,” a penitential celebration at St. Peter’s Basilica. The event includes several hours for confession and eucharistic adoration. After hearing about this initiative as well as the 24-hour Festival of Forgiveness in the Archdiocese of Chicago last…

Social ministry teams combat food insecurity

by Kristi Anderson The Visitor Just after her husband, Brian, passed away unexpectedly, Sheri Renner was asked to get involved with the social ministry team at her parish, St. Louis Bertrand in Foreston. Being part of the team helped her to think about others who were suffering and needed help, she said. “It is rewarding…

Philippine nun: DiCaprio’s speech reflects churches’ concern on resources

MANILA, Philippines (CNS) — “Be like Leonardo DiCaprio.” Ucanews.com reported that was the call of Sister Aloha Vergara of the Handmaids of the House of God, who said DiCaprio’s speech at the Feb. 28 Academy Awards “reflects the people and the churches’ position on the protection of the environment.” The Hollywood actor said climate change…

How does mercy apply to public policy in the Year of Mercy?

By Maria Wiering For The Visitor As the public policy voice of the state’s Catholic bishops, the Minnesota Catholic Conference is also working on broader issues — including how, in the Year of Mercy, to apply mercy to public policy. When speaking about mercy, Jason Adkins, MCC executive director, is quick to distinguish between “true…

Let the healing begin

By Kristi Anderson The Visitor Priests all over the Diocese of St. Cloud are preparing for the Festival of Forgiveness March 4. The sacrament of reconciliation will be available at designated churches around the diocese for 12 hours from 10 a.m. until 10 p.m. All are invited to participate in this special Year of Mercy…

Shrine profile – St. Peregrine Shrine, Collegeville

Pope Francis declared an Extraordinary Year of Mercy beginning Dec. 8, 2015, and ending Nov. 20, 2016. Bishop Donald Kettler has designated places of pilgrimage and shrines within the St. Cloud Diocese for this Holy Year, inviting the faithful to experience grace and reconciliation as they rediscover joy in the mercy of God. A pilgrimage…

Pope calls for jubilee moratorium on death penalty

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Pope Francis called for a moratorium on executions during the Year of Mercy and said the fifth commandment, “Thou shalt not kill,” applies not only to the innocent but to the guilty as well. “Even a criminal has the inviolable right to life, a gift of God,” he said Feb. 21…

Pope tells Mexican prisoners society needs system of ‘social health’

CIUDAD JUAREZ, Mexico (CNS) — Pope Francis urged society to rethink its ideas of locking up inmates and throwing away the key, calling such an approach another symptom of the “throwaway culture” he often decries and “a symptom of a culture that has stopped supporting life, of a society that has abandoned its children.” Speaking…