Just one smile from a loving family can warm coldest world, pope says

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — The smile and love of a family can light up the world, bringing warmth and hope to communities that have become cold, lifeless and depressed, Pope Francis said. “No economic and political engineering is able to substitute this contribution from families,” he said Sept. 2 during his general audience talk in…

Trip through Central Park added to pope’s New York itinerary

NEW YORK (CNS) — Pope Francis will get a glimpse of leafy Central Park and thousands of waving New Yorkers Sept. 25 when he makes “a historic procession” through the urban landmark, according to the city’s mayor. Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Sept 1 the pope will ride along the West Drive of the park…

Contemplate, give thanks, protect: Pope Francis prays for creation

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Leading prayers for the safeguarding of creation, Pope Francis prayed that people would learn to contemplate God in the beauty of the universe, give thanks and protect all life. During an evening celebration of the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation, the pope prayed that God would “enlighten…

Texas parish thrilled to have pope as surprise guest at ABC town hall

MCALLEN, Texas (CNS) — At Sacred Heart Church in McAllen, members of the community, most of them volunteers at a respite center for immigrants at Sacred Heart parish hall, were invited to a special event by ABC News, but were not informed in advance of just how special that event would be. People started arriving…

Pope holds ‘virtual town hall’ with ABC and Catholics in 3 cities

WASHINGTON (CNS) — Pope Francis held a “virtual town hall” with Catholics in Chicago, Los Angeles and McAllen, Texas, in advance of his Sept. 22-27 visit to the United States. The town hall was arranged by ABC News, which was to air portions of the meeting during its “World News Tonight” program Aug. 31, with…

Back-to-school homework for students includes preparing to meet pope

NEW YORK (CNS) — Being called to the principal’s office during the school year can cause angst even among the most mischievous students. But for those who typically demonstrate their best behavior, being summoned during the summer may be more daunting. Fortunately for 24 well-behaved youngsters from four Catholic elementary schools in Harlem, such a…