Just before the mid-day Angelus today (September 25, 2016), the Pope prayed for an end to the violence assailing Mexico, and especially for two priests murdered last week. On Monday, the bodies of the priests were found ridden with bullets in a ditch at the side of a motorway in the gulf state of Veracruz. Father Alejo Nabor Jiménez, 50, and Father José Alfredo Juárez, 28, who was recently ordained, had been kidnapped from their parish church hours earlier.
At the Angelus on Sunday, September 25, 2016, Pope Francis offered prayers and a greeting to the deaf community worldwide. "I want to salute all deaf persons - some of whom are here [at the Angelus] - and encourage them to give their part for a Church and for a society that are both ever more ready and willing to welcome everyone," he said.
Pope Francis has urged catechists to focus first and foremost on the Resurrection. Speaking at the Jubilee of Catechists this Sunday (25 September 2016) the Holy Father said Christ's victory over death was "the centre" of the Good News, and "the beating heart" around which all else revolves. He described Christ rising from the dead as "the key message of the faith", which catechists needed to keep right at the centre of their apostolate.
Operation Noah, an ecumenical Christian charity focusing on Climate Change, was one of many Christian groups taking part in the 2016 Interfaith Climate Symposium on 21 September in London. Ruth Jarman of Operation Noah's Board reports on the event: "Nearly everyone working in this area agrees that climate change is a spiritual issue," said Bishop Nicholas Holtam, the lead Anglican bishop on the environment, in the first talk at the Interfaith Climate Symposium. The aim of the event was to enable and encourage faith groups to work together on climate change.
Dear Readers - On Sunday morning I'm setting out for Heathrow Airport with a group of walkers from Farm Street Church, to fly to Barcelona where we will begin our ten-day 'Ignatian Camino' to Montserrat, to raise funds for Aid to the Church in Need projects in northern Iraq, and the Jesuit Refugee Service UK. We will be following the route that St Ignatius walked hundreds of years ago, from the Shrine of St Peter Claver in Verdù across Catalunya to the Abbey of Montserrat and Manresa.
It's been described as 'a miracle in wood'. St Mary's Altar, towering behind the high altar of St Mary's Basilica in Kraków, is the largest Gothic altarpiece in the world and a national treasure of Poland. For centuries, pilgrims have come from around the world to gaze on this masterpiece. The work consists of 200 fine wooden sculptures, painted in vibrant colours and gold leaf. The central part, with huge 2.7 metre tall lifelike statues, depicts dramatically the death of the Virgin Mary, surrounded by the twelve Apostles.
Born in South London, the artist and poet David Jones nevertheless grew up a fervent Welsh patriot, absorbing the romantic epics of Welsh history with its battles and brave warriors. Hardly surprising then, that he should volunteer in the Royal Welch Fusiliers when the Great War broke out. Thomas Dilworth takes us through Jones's wartime life as if inviting the reader to be a third party to a conversation between friends, and indeed the book is largely the fruit of interviews with David Jones and his friends. Like other poets and former soldiers Jones never got the
The Apostleship of the Sea (AoS) is a great example of the Works of Mercy by the Church, offering friendship and support to seafarers, said Archbishop Peter Smith of Southwark. In his homily at a Mass to celebrate the feast of Stella Maris, Our Lady Star of the Sea, Archbishop Peter said: "This charity is indeed a wonderful work of mercy and we thank God today for all of you who support this work as volunteers, or who help to provide the financial support without which this work of mercy could not continue."
We don't have to travel very far to see the contrasts of poverty and excessive luxury, its all around us especially in the urban areas and cities of our world. In London for instance, just underneath the recently built and grotesquely expensive Hyde Park flats (some unoccupied because their rich owners use them as investments) the poor can be found. In the underpasses or on the grassy spaces they lie, homes of cardboard and ragged sleeping bags. Some are transient, wandering from place to place, others have fallen between the cracks of society to
There are few professions that have so much influence on society as that of journalism, Pope Francis told representatives from the Italian National Council of the Order of Journalists on Thursday. He noted that they are usually the ones who are there to record, the "first draft of history", "the building of the news agenda and introducing people to the interpretation of events. The Holy Father then went on to reflect on some aspects of the journalistic profession, and how it can serve for the betterment of the society in which we live.
Pope Francis urged the faithful to be as merciful as the Lord, because "that is the best way to be a sign, a channel, a witness of His love". The Holy Father was speaking on Wednesday during the weekly General Audience in St. Peter's Square. Reflecting on the reading from the Gospel of Luke on being merciful, "just as your Father is merciful," Pope Francis said that is not a mere slogan, but a commitment for life. That reading is where the motto of the Holy Year of Mercy comes from, he said.
The Archbishop of Dublin, Diarmuid Martin and Minister for Education Richard Bruton will this evening officially launch Ministry Advocacy and Compassion a unique audio visual exhibition chronicling the role of the Church in the events of 1916. For the first time, historical documents from the Dublin Diocesan Archive will be on display alongside material from many other Religious Orders who were at the centre of events Easter Week - including the Capuchins, Dominicans, Franciscans, Irish Sisters of Charity, Jesuits, the Loreto Sisters and the Sisters of Mercy.
If Mosul is recaptured from Daesh (ISIS) it could pave the way for the return of Iraqi Christians to their ancient homelands in neighbouring Nineveh - according to bishops and other Church leaders who want to reach a deal with the government. A delegation to Iraq made up of MPs and clergy led by Catholic charity Aid to the Church in Need, which has provided emergency help for displaced Iraqi Christians, found that Church leaders and other leading Church figures were developing proposals which would enable the faithful
Cardinal Vincent Nichols and the Archbishop of Canterbury, Most Rev Justin Welby have responded to an appeal for support from Polish President Andrzej Duda in the wake of a number of racist attacks on the Polish community which left one Polish worker dead. In his letters, President Duda asked the church leaders to appeal to Britons to respect the fundamental rights of Poles living in the United Kingdom. Poles living in the UK are "honest, hardworking people, and they make an important contribution to Great Britain's economic growth," President
Pope Francis contrasted the anxiety that comes from the Holy Spirit and the anxiety that comes from a bad conscience during his homily at Mass in Casa Santa Marta on Thursday he also spoke about vanity, which "masks" life, making it look like something it is not. The Gospel of the day describes King Herod (Antipas) as being perplexed or anxious because, after having John the Baptist killed, he now felt threatened by Jesus. He was worried just as his father, Herod the Great, was troubled after the visit of the Magi.
Marco Politi, Italian journalist and author will be giving a lecture entitled: Loneliness of a Long-Distance Runner at Heythrop College on 12 October. A columnist for the Italian daily newspaper, Fatto Quotidiano, Politi has built a successful career commentating on the Vatican and religious matters since the 1970s. In addition to his recent coverage of Pope Francis, he has followed Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI on over 80 trips around the world and has regularly contributed to the BBC, CNN and ABC news channels.
Choirs and singers across the whole world got together to send a message of peace and unity on International Day of Peace. A million people were involved in One Day One Choir, a global choral initiative started in 2014 by singer Jane Hanson to mobilise the power of singing to unite people globally. A flash mob in Trafalgar Square, London, led by choir leaders Jeremy Haneman and Tom Morley, brought together singers for an impromptu performance of songs about peace.
The work of the Apostleship of the Sea (AoS) brings "great blessings, great comfort and great joy to the many who receive the ministry", Bishop of Middlesbrough Bishop Terry Drainey said at the end of Mass to mark the feast of Stella Maris, Our Lady Star of the Sea at St Mary's Cathedral in Middlesbrough. Bishop Drainey thanked AoS' port chaplains and ship visitors for the work they do supporting seafarers. "It is a very quiet work, lots of people wouldn't know about it but such essential and important work," he said.
Peace campaigners have welcomed Austria's UN General Assembly resolution to prohibit nuclear weapons in 2017. Austria's foreign minister, Sebastian Kurz, announced on Wednesday that his country would join other UN member states in tabling a resolution next month to convene negotiations on a legally binding instrument to prohibit nuclear weapons in 2017. Speaking in the high-level debate of the UN General Assembly in New York, he said that "experience shows that the first step to eliminate weapons of mass destruction is to prohibit
The daily life of children in the Holy Land under occupation by the Israeli military forces in Israel was shown in a moving film at an event on Tuesday given by Westminster and Bayswater Group of Amnesty International. The plight of one little boy, Saleh, illustrated the trauma of a whole generation of youngsters in fear of imprisonment and harassment, when he declared: "I feel nothing." Victoria Brittain, of Action 4 Children in Palestine, was joined by Sir Geoffrey Bindman, QC, from Independent Jewish Voices, and Pat Gaffney of Pax Christi to describe
The charity Progressio has announced today that it is to close next year. Following the loss of a two million pound grant from the Department for International Development, the charity has been unable to raise enough funds to continue. In a letter, the Chair of Trustees, Martin McEnery writes: 'At a meeting on 14 September 2016 to discuss the conclusions of the recent consultation on Progressio's future, the charity's trustees and myself as chair took the decision to begin proceedings to close Progressio.
He bent his head down momentarily and then raised it to brace himself for the verdict and the sentence. "Guilty." "Forty-four years in prison," a staggering reality for a teenage refugee, who thought he would be released because of his age and background. All his dreams and hopes for his life, wiped away at the stroke of the judge's pen. His only hope now is in the appeals process, which often results in greatly reducing the sentence. We were stunned. After visiting him in the jail the day before the trial,
The little-known story of the Turkish Sultan who was one of the few people to come to the aid of Ireland during the Great Famine, is the focus of a new film currently in production, starring Irish actor Colin Farrell. Between 1845 and 1852, Ireland endured the terrible loss of a million dead and the mass exodus of more than one million people never to return. When the Turkish Ottoman, Sultan Khaleefah Abdul-Majid I, heard about the unfolding disaster, he declared his intention to send £10,000 to help Irish farmers.
The 2016 UNCTAD (United Nations Conference on Trade and Development) report, entitled 'Structural Transformation for Inclusive and Sustained Growth' was launched at the Vatican on Wednesday. The Holy See is a member of UNCTAD, which helps developing countries diversify their economy to benefit from the globalized economy more fairly and effectively. Fr Michael Czerny, SJ, spokesman for the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace read a speech prepared by Cardinal Peter Turkson, who heads the Council but was unable to
Campaigners have welcomed the financial, resettlement and support pledges made at Tuesday's Leaders' Summit on Refugees, but said they were no substitute for more stable year-on-year funding and a permanent agreement on resettling refugees to meet the significant levels of need today. The pledges were made by 50 countries called together by President Obama to address the serious shortfall in money and resettlement programmes for refugees worldwide. World leaders at the New York summit agreed to resettle twice as many refugees