World News

Elderly face danger of ‘covert euthanasia,’ pope says in book

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — While the fight to preserve life is often centered on abortion and capital punishment, the future Pope Francis also warned against a more subtle form of disregard for human dignity: what he called “covert euthanasia.” “In this consumerist, hedonist and narcissistic society, we are accustomed to the idea that there are […]

In Mary’s month, Pope Francis prays at ancient Basilica of St. Mary Major in Rome

The pope returned to the basilica, the oldest church in the West dedicated to the mother of Jesus, May 4 to pray the rosary in observance of May as the traditional month of Mary. According to legend, its construction during the pontificate of Pope Liberius (352-366) was inspired by a miraculous snowfall here in the early morning hours of Aug. 5.

Pope, Lebanese president appeal for aid for Syrian refugees

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Meeting at the Vatican May 3, Pope Francis and Lebanese President Michel Sleiman called on the international community to offer concrete aid to Lebanon and other countries hosting hundreds of thousands of refugees from Syria. Aides to Sleiman told reporters the president was unable to come to the Vatican for Pope […]

Pope: People have guts to be ambitious; instead, be courageous for God

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — People are courageous in pursuing their careers, personal ambitions and jealousies, but they really should be using that courage to believe in the resurrected Christ, pray to him and spread the Gospel, Pope Francis said. When the church loses courage, it is enveloped by a “tepid atmosphere,” with “lukewarm Christians without […]

Mexican court upholds states’ amendments that life begins at conception

MEXICO CITY (CNS) -- Mexico's Supreme Court ruled May 2 against a challenge to the amendments brought by municipalities in the states of Oaxaca and Guanajuato; the court ruled that local governments have no jurisdiction over health matters.

Catholics, Buddhists must work together to defend life, cardinal says

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Catholics and Buddhists share “a profound reverence for life,” which should motivate them to work together to protect human life, including the life of the unborn, said Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, president of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue. “It is urgent for both Buddhists and Christians, on the basis of the […]

Pope Francis welcomes retired Pope Benedict back to Vatican

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- For the first time in history, the Vatican is home to a pope and a retired pope. Pope Francis welcomed his predecessor, retired Pope Benedict XVI, to the Vatican May 2 outside the convent remodeled for the 86-year-old retired pontiff and five aides. Pope Francis and Pope Benedict entered the convent's chapel together "for a brief moment of prayer," said Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, Vatican spokesman.

Unemployment goes against God’s plan — ‘It is not right!’ Pope says

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Pope Francis called for an end to slave labor and human trafficking as well as greater efforts to create dignified work for more people. The problem of unemployment is "very often caused by a purely economic view of society, which seeks self-centered profit, outside the bounds of social justice," he said, marking the May 1 feast of St. Joseph the Worker during his weekly general audience.

Strong faith is key to church unity, says doctrinal congregation head

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- The unity of the Catholic Church rises or falls to the degree that its members uncompromisingly hold firm to the faith transmitted by the apostles, said Archbishop Gerhard Muller, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

Give curia reform time, Vatican official says, urging calm

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Amid widespread speculation about a complete and quick reorganization of Vatican departments and rumors in the Italian media that Pope Francis was going to close the Vatican bank, a top Vatican official told everyone to calm down. "The pope was surprised to see attributed to him phrases that he never said and that misrepresent his thought," said Archbishop Angelo Becciu, whose job is similar to a chief of staff.