News

Pope calls on international community to help persecuted Christians in Iraq

The Pope is asking government leaders to help persecuted Christians in Iraq. Rising violence has forced an estimated 200,000 people to flee their homes as Islamic extremists take over northern cities.  Through a letter, the Pope called for an end to the bloodshed, highlighting the same call he made during a recent Angelus. 
 
POPE FRANCIS (July 20th) 
"Today our brothers are persecuted. They are banished from their homes and forced to flee without even being able to take their belongings!”
 
Most recently, the Vatican's State Department sent a message to ambassadors accredited to the Holy See, calling for their governments to take the rising violence seriously. It calls for the international community to offer their help. 
 
On behalf of the Pope, the Vatican's spokesperson, Fr. Federico Lombardi, read part of the Pope's call for action. 
 
FR. FEDERICO LOMBARDI
Vatican Spokesperson 
"I ask that programs be in place to protect those who are affected or threatened by the violence. May the displaced find the necessary and urgent support they need.” 
 
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Pope Francis encourages Knights of Columbus to defend religious freedom

Pope Francis sent a message to the Knights of Columbus to mark their 132nd International Convention in Orlando, Florida. 
 
The message was sent to the Knights in a letter sent by Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican Secretary of State. The Pope expressed his gratitude for their service in contributing "to the mission of the Church at every level” especially their work in charitable activities. The Knights of Columbus set a record in donations in the past year, donating more than $170 million to charities. 
 
He also called on them to defend religion’s "proper place in the public square and to encourage the lay faithful in their mission of shaping a society which reflects the truth of Christ.” 
 
The letter was read to over 2,000 members of the Knights of Columbus attending the conference.
 
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He was an atheist, but he made a film about Jesus and dedicated it to John XXIII

He was an atheist and a communist, who shocked the world in 1964. That's when filmmaker Pier Paolo Pasolini released a controversial movie, titled 'The Gospel According to St. Matthew.' True to its name, it deals with the Biblical text, without omissions or add ons. 
 
But what surprised people even more was who he dedicated the film to. It read: 'To my dear, cheerful and familiar memories of John XXIII.' The film was released 50 years ago. In light of anniversary, the Vatican's newspaper described it as the best film about Jesus. 
 
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North Korean Catholics will not be attending Papal Mass in South Korea

North Korean Catholics will not be attending the Pope's Mass in South Korea. Though it was believed that a group of North Korean Catholics would go across the border to attend the Pope's Mass in Seoul, the invitation has apparently been denied. 
 
Pope Francis will celebrate a Mass of Reconciliation on the final day of his apostolic visit to South Korea in the Myeondong Cathedral. 
 
However, the day of the Mass coincides with a joint South Korean-US military drill,which  North Korea "condemned as a rehearsal for nuclear war.”
 
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Statement on the Passing of Cardinal Clancy, Archbishop Emeritus of Sydney

His Eminence Edward Bede Cardinal Clancy AC,

the seventh Archbishop of Sydney passed away peacefully yesterday in Sydney.

Cardinal Clancy was aged 90 and for the past eight years has been cared for by the Little Sisters of the Poor at Randwick.

Cardinal Clancy was the seventh Archbishop of Sydney from 1983 to 2001.

He was born in Lithgow NSW and from a very early age said he wanted to be a priest beginning his studies at age 16.

He was ordained to the priesthood in 1949 and continued his studies both in Australia and Rome. In 1974 he was ordained Auxiliary Bishop of Sydney.

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