In his passion, Jesus reveals the God of mercy, pope says

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Just as the crowds and government officials tried to dodge responsibility for Jesus’ fate after he was arrested, so today too many individuals and countries want someone else to care for refugees fleeing violence and migrants seeking a better life, Pope Francis said. Preaching about the story of Jesus’ passion and…

Closed doors, hearts cause suffering to innocent migrants, pope says

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Like the people of Israel in exile, migrants forced from their homeland due to war and persecution are often left to suffer because of closed hearts and doors, Pope Francis said. “In these cases one may ask, ‘Where is God? How is it that so much suffering can come upon men,…

Mother Teresa to be canonized Sept. 4; pope sets other sainthood dates

By Cindy Wooden Catholic News Service Pope Francis will declare Blessed Teresa of Kolkata a saint at the Vatican Sept. 4, the conclusion of the Year of Mercy jubilee for those engaged in works of mercy. The date was announced March 15 during an “ordinary public consistory,” a meeting of the pope, cardinals and promoters…

U.S. Sec. Kerry congratulates Pope Francis on 3rd anniversary

(Vatican Radio) U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has extended official congratulations to Pope Francis on the occasion of the third anniversary of the Holy Father’s election to the See of Peter. In a press statement released through the Dept. of State, Sec. Kerry thanks Pope Francis for his role in renewing his country’s diplomatic…

Sin makes us blind, but confession heals, pope says

By Cindy Wooden Catholic News Service Exercise a little courage and go to confession, turn away from selfishness and sin and back to God during the Year of Mercy, Pope Francis urged people at a Lenten penance service. “When our desire to be healed becomes more courageous, it leads to prayer, to crying out fervently…

Pope Francis meets with CEO of Instagram, Kevin Systrom

Pope Francis on Friday met with the CEO and co-founder of Instagram, Kevin Systrom.  The photo-sharing social network was founded in 2010, and bought by Facebook in 2012. Over 300 million people use the service each month. Systrom posted a photo of the meeting on his Instagram profile, writing: “Today I had the honor of…

Pope Francis meets new President of Argentina

Pope Francis on Saturday morning received in audience  the President of Argentina, Mauricio Macri, who subsequently met with the Vatican’s Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, and Archbishop  Paul Richard Gallagher, the Secretary for Relations with States.  President Macri assumed office in December, and was previously the Head of Government of the Autonomous City of…

Catholic archbishop, Orthodox leader see significance in Havana meeting

INDIANAPOLIS (CNS) — The U.S. archbishop who is co-chair of the North American Orthodox-Catholic Theological Consultation and an archdeacon who helps lead Orthodox ecumenical efforts in the United States watched with interest as Pope Francis and Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill met in Cuba Feb. 12. Both of them — Catholic Archbishop Joseph W. Tobin of…

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…