Tag: Vatican

Pope appoints first woman to Vatican foreign ministry post

VATICAN CITY | Pope Francis named Francesca Di Giovanni, a longtime Vatican official, as an undersecretary in the Vatican’s foreign ministry office, making her the first woman to hold a managerial position at the Vatican Secretariat of State. The Vatican announced Jan. 15 that within the Vatican Secretariat of State’s Section for Relations with States,… Read more »

Chinese bishop says Catholics must put ‘love for homeland’ first

Beijing, China | A Chinese bishop has said that Catholics in the country must put their loyalty to the state before the faith. Bishop John Fang Xingyao made the statement during a Communist Party sponsored meeting in Beijing last week held to discuss concerning religion in China.  “Love for the homeland must be greater than… Read more »

Vatican unveils Nativity scene, lights Christmas tree

VATICAN CITY | The Vatican unveiled the Nativity scene and lit the Christmas tree with energy-saving lights in St. Peter’s Square during a late afternoon ceremony Dec. 5. The 85-foot-tall spruce tree came from the forests of the Veneto region in northeast Italy and another 20 smaller trees were donated by communities in the region’s… Read more »

Cured Chicago mother: Newman events ‘experience of a thousand lifetimes’

LONDON | The Chicago mother healed from a potentially lethal hemorrhage at the intercession of St. John Henry Newman has described his canonization as “the experience of a thousand lifetimes.” Melissa Villalobos attended the Oct. 13 ceremony at the Vatican with her husband and their seven children, and together they carried the offertory gifts to… Read more »

Kindly lights in gloomy world: Pope declares five new saints

VATICAN CITY | Saints are people who recognized their need for God’s help, who took risks to discover God’s will and to help others and who nurtured a habit of thanksgiving, Pope Francis said. “The culmination of the journey of faith is to live a life of continual thanksgiving. Let us ask ourselves: Do we,… Read more »

On feast of St. Francis, pope joins Amazonians to plant tree at Vatican

VATICAN CITY | Pope Francis joined Amazonian church workers and indigenous people Oct. 4, the feast of St. Francis of Assisi, to plant a tree in the Vatican Gardens. He also consecrated the Synod of Bishops for the Amazon to St. Francis. The synod will be held at the Vatican Oct. 6-27. About 20 delegates… Read more »

Vatican confirms Medjugorje approval by joining festival

WARSAW, Poland | Senior Vatican representatives joined the first officially approved church festival at Medjugorje, three months after Catholic pilgrimages to the site in Bosnia-Herzegovina were authorized by the pope. “We are called to share the difficulties of our contemporaries and we have a responsibility to care for them,” Archbishop Rino Fisichella, president of the… Read more »

Cardinal visits refugees in Greek camps as political solutions falter

MYTILENE, Greece | The Vatican and the Greek government agree on what should happen to the asylum-seekers in Greek camps: They should be welcomed by European communities and helped to build a new life on the continent. Exactly how that should happen seems unclear, though. Cardinal Konrad Krajewski, the papal almoner, went to the Greek… Read more »

Holy boldness: Profile of women religious rising at Vatican

VATICAN CITY | The Vatican can move at a snail’s pace but looking back over the past six years, the profile of women, especially women religious, at Vatican events has risen sharply. The Roman Curia is not teeming with women leaders and Pope Francis has given no indication, for example, that he will open the… Read more »

Bishops at summit consider 21 action items to handle, prevent abuse

VATICAN CITY | Immediately after asking bishops and religious superiors to be concrete in confronting the clerical sexual abuse crisis and the need to protect children in the church, Pope Francis handed them a list of 21 action items to consider. From publicizing the contact information for reporting cases of abuse to cooperating with local… Read more »