Pope invites Lebanese Christians to Vatican for peace prayer

 Pope Francis has invited representatives of Lebanon’s Christian community to the Vatican on July 1 for a day of prayer and reflection “about the worrisome situation in the country.”Francis announced the encounter during his Sunday noon blessing, saying the aim was to &ldquo

Pope Francis denounces violence between Israel, Hamas

Pope Francis has denounced the “unacceptable” spiral of violence between Israel and the Palestinians, saying the deaths in particular of children was a “sign that they don’t want to build the future but want to destroy it.”Francis prayed for peace, calm and internatio

Pope allows Vatican courts to try cardinals and bishops

Pope Francis on Friday gave the Vatican's civilian courts the power to try cardinals and bishops — a historic reform that ends a long-held privilege for senior church officials. Until now, cardinals and bishops accused of criminal offences could only be judged by a supreme court consisting

Pope calls for vaccines to be shared with poorest nations

Pope Francis on Sunday called for vaccinations to be shared with the world’s poorest countries, saying they were “an essential tool” in the fight against COVID-19.“I urge the entire international community... to commit to overcoming delays in the distribution of vaccines an

Pope makes surprise visit to homeless getting COVID-19 vaccine in Vatican

Pope Francis paid a surprise visit on Friday to homeless and poor people from Rome getting free COVID-19 vaccinations in the Vatican. Pictures released by the Vatican showed the 84-year-old pontiff greeting doctors, nurses, charity workers and vaccine recipients in a make-shift clinic in the Vati

Pope says he will visit Lebanon after historic Iraq trip

Pope Francis said he is to visit crisis-hit Lebanon. He made the announcement only hours after taking off from Baghdad following a hugely successful trip to Iraq. The pontiff told reporters on a flight to Rome: "Lebanon is in crisis ... but it has the strength of people.” The visit of Pope

Pope urges prayer for success of Iraq visit

 Pope Francis on Wednesday asked all Catholics to pray for the success of his visit to Iraq on March 5-8. “The day after tomorrow, with the help of God, I’ll go to Iraq for a three-day pilgrimage. For a long time I’ve wanted to meet the people of Iraq, who’ve suffered

Pope urges U.S. to shun violence, protect democracy after mob attack

VATICAN CITY  - Pope Francis urged Americans on Sunday to shun violence, seek reconciliation and “protect democratic values” following the mob attack on the U.S. Capitol building by supporters of President Trump that left five people dead. “I repeat that violence is self-de

Pope pushes through nerve pain to give New Year’s blessing

VATICAN CITY: Pope Francis ushered in the New Year on Friday with a traditional Angelus blessing from the papal library, pushing through nerve pain that forced him to skip New Year’s ceremonies in St. Peter’s Basilica.The pope appeared relaxed as he stood at a lectern in the Apostolic

"Sciatica" prevents the Pope from presiding over the New Year mass

The Vatican said, today, Thursday, that Pope Francis will not preside over Mass on New Year's Eve and New Year's Eve due to his "sciatica" disease that causes pain in one of his legs. It is the first time in years that the Pope, who turned 84 this month, has been forced to miss a papal event for

Ethiopian police arrest Reuters cameraman

Pope Francis has issued a new decree making charity funds more transparent and tightening controls on Vatican finances after a scandal over a luxury London property deal. The main target is the Secretariat of State, the most important part of the Vatican administration, which must relinquish mana

In Christmas message curbed by COVID-19, pope calls on nations to share vaccines

VATICAN CITY: Pope Francis in his Christmas message on Friday said political and business leaders must not allow market forces and patent laws to take priority over making Covid 19 vaccines available to all, condemning nationalism and “the virus of radical individualism.”In a sign of t

Pope snubs Vatican's sci-fi Nativity scene, directs visitors to others

Pope Francis on Sunday appeared to add his own thumbs-down to widespread criticism of an unorthodox nativity scene in St. Peter’s Square, telling visitors to instead visit a nearby exhibition of traditional crèches. At his last Sunday blessing and address before Christmas, Francis al

Rome homeless send sunflowers to pope on 84th birthday

Rome’s homeless sent sunflowers to Pope Francis for his 84th birthday on Thursday and the pontiff marked the day by sending four ventilators to hospitals in Venezuela, the Vatican said. Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni said the flowers would be used to adorn the altar in Francis’s resid

Pope Francis to make historic Iraq visit in March

Pope Francis will make a historic visit to Iraq in March, the Vatican said Monday, the first ever by a pontiff and which will include a trip to Mosul.The 83-year-old has long spoken of his desire to visit the Middle Eastern country, where conflict has caused the number of Christians to fall dramat

Pope returns to private library for audience as virus surges

Pope Francis urged people follow recommendations from governments and health authorities to prevent coronavirus infections as he returned to his private library for his Wednesday general audience amid a surge of infections in Europe.The Vatican announced last week that Francis, 83, was suspending

Pope expresses support for detained fishermen in Libya

Pope Francis expressed support on Sunday for 18 fishermen held in Libya, weighing in on a standoff between Italy and the administration of Khalifa Haftar, one of the North African country’s two rival leaders, Reuters reports. “I want to say a word of encouragement and suppor

Powerful cardinal resigns amid Vatican investments scandal

The powerful head of the Vatican's saint-making office, Cardinal Angelo Becciu, resigned from the post suddenly on Thursday and renounced his rights as a cardinal amid a financial scandal that has reportedly implicated him indirectly. The Vatican provided no details on why Pope Francis accepted t