Pope Francis

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Pope Francis Remembers Last Day He Watched TV

It was July 15, 1990

(Newser) - If the Vatican has a water cooler, Pope Francis is decidedly not the guy spouting off Monday morning about last night's Game of Thrones: As NBC News reports via an extensive interview with Argentina's La Voz del Pueblo , the pontiff says he hasn't watched the boob tube... More »

Pope's Newest Saints: Palestinian Nuns

Pair from Holy Land canonized in front of Mahmoud Abbas

(Newser) - Pope Francis canonized two nuns from what was 19th-century Palestine today in hopes of encouraging Christians across the Middle East who are facing a wave of persecution from Islamic extremists. Sisters Mariam Bawardy and Marie Alphonsine Ghattas were among four nuns who were made saints today. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas... More »

'Bienvenido!' Francis Welcomes Raul Castro

Pontiff helped drive warming US-Cuban relations, will visit island

(Newser) - Cuban President Raul Castro received a warm welcome at the Vatican today from Pope Francis, who played a key role in the breakthrough between Washington and Havana aimed at restoring US-Cuban diplomatic ties. "Bienvenido!" Francis said in his native Spanish, welcoming Castro in a studio near the Vatican... More »

Vatican OKs Controversial Missionary for Sainthood

Seems like Francis pushed for Junipero Serra, despite Native American complaints

(Newser) - The Vatican's saint-making office has officially given a thumbs-up for the Rev. Junipero Serra to be declared a saint—four months after Pope Francis announced he would canonize the controversial 18th-century missionary during his upcoming visit to the United States. The Vatican said today that the Congregation for the... More »

Skeptical Guy Hangs Up on Pope— Twice

He was sure it was a prank

(Newser) - The thing about being the pope is that strangers aren't going to believe it if you call out of the blue. Which is why Franco Rabuffi hung up on a man calling himself Pope Francis on April 27. And when the man called back, the ticked-off Rabuffi hung up... More »

Conservatives: Pope 'Misled' on Climate Change

Koch-funded think tank argues against 'unscientific agenda' Francis is pushing

(Newser) - Pope Francis has taken on procreation , ISIS , and the Vatican's money issues , and now he's about to take on climate change caused by humans. He's still preparing a secret papal encyclical on the environment due in the summer, and today Vatican officials are hosting a summit to... More »

In First, US Bishop Convicted in Porn Coverup Resigns

Missouri's Robert Finn was under pressure after failing to report priest's porn

(Newser) - Pope Francis today accepted the resignation of a US bishop who pleaded guilty to failing to report a priest suspected of child abuse in the first known case of a pope sanctioning bishops for covering up for pedophiles. The Vatican said today that Bishop Robert Finn had offered his resignation... More »

Sisters' Reaction to Vatican Ending Nun Takeover: Thank God

Critics said church's treatment of LCWR was misogynistic

(Newser) - The Vatican today unexpectedly ended its controversial takeover of the main umbrella group of US nuns, saying it had accepted a final report on its overhaul of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious and declared that the "implementation of the mandate has been accomplished." The news signals a... More »

Furious With Francis, Turkey Yanks Ambassador

After pope labeled Armenian genocide a genocide

(Newser) - Pope Francis today lamented the deaths a century ago of some 1.5 million Armenians as one of "three massive and unprecedented tragedies" that struck the last century, reports the BBC , and the AP adds that Turkey wasted little time in yanking its ambassador to the Vatican after the... More »

Faithful Brave Rainy Easter as Pope Applauds Iran Deal

Francis hopes it's a 'definitive step' toward 'more fraternal world'

(Newser) - In an Easter peace wish, Pope Francis today praised the framework nuclear agreement with Iran as an opportunity to make the world safer, while expressing deep worry about bloodshed in Libya, Yemen, Syria, Iraq, Nigeria, and elsewhere in Africa. Cautious hope ran through Francis' "Urbi et Orbi" Easter message,... More »

Pope Washes Feet of Inmates, Baby

'Even I need to be cleansed by the Lord,' he says

(Newser) - Pope Francis washed the feet of 12 inmates and a baby at Rome's main prison yesterday in a pre-Easter ritual meant to show his willingness to serve. He asked them to pray that he, too, might be cleansed of his "filth." As the inmates wept, Francis knelt... More »

Pope Hailed for Blood 'Half-Miracle'

Archbishop says Francis turned saint's blood back to liquid

(Newser) - Pope Francis was credited with what could be deemed a half-miracle in Naples, Italy, on Saturday, although it didn't involve bringing anybody halfway back to life or turning water halfway into wine. Instead, the normally-solidified blood of St. Gennaro, the city's patron saint, half-liquefied when the pope kissed... More »

Disgraced Cardinal Resigns After Sex Inquiry

Keith O'Brien gives up rights, privileges of cardinal

(Newser) - After sending him away for "penance," Pope Francis has officially accepted the resignation of disgraced cardinal Keith O'Brien. The cardinal resigned as archbishop in 2013 when he was accused of inappropriately touching four priests, but the latest move means O'Brien will give up the rights and... More »

Francis Thinks He'll Be Pope 5 Years, Tops

And he's really dying to go out for pizza without anyone seeing him

(Newser) - Today's the two-anniversary of Jorge Mario Bergoglio becoming pope, and he's waxing somewhat wistful about his expected tenure at the Vatican. "I have the feeling that my Pontificate will be brief, four or five years; I do not know, even two or three," the 78-year-old told... More »

Vatican: ISIS Threat to Francis 'Exists'

Security chief says he's taking vague threats seriously

(Newser) - The Vatican knows of "no plan for an attack against the Vatican or the Holy Father," but in the wake of ISIS' latest round of sabre-rattling, the commander of the Vatican gendarmes says that he's taking it seriously. "The threat exists," Domenico Giani tells an... More »

Pope Sparks Anger in Mexico With Drug Comment

Francis noted concerns over 'Mexicanization' of Argentina drug trafficking

(Newser) - The Vatican sought today to defuse a diplomatic tiff with Mexico after Pope Francis referred to the possible "Mexicanization" of his native Argentina from drug trafficking, the latest instance of Francis' casual speaking style getting him into trouble. The Vatican said it had sent an official diplomatic note to... More »

Christian ISIS Captive Dies a Muslim— Now What?

Photojournalist James Foley apparently converted during captivity

(Newser) - Many Roman Catholics saw journalist James Foley—who was kidnapped, tortured, and beheaded by ISIS —as a symbol of enduring faith under horrible circumstances. Then it came out that he had converted to Islam in captivity. Now what? "The answer is we can’t assess it," says... More »

Pope Opens a Barbershop for the Homeless

The less fortunate can also get a shower in public restrooms

(Newser) - Homeless men and women lined up today off St. Peter's Square to take advantage of Pope Francis' latest charitable initiative: a free shave and shower for the least fortunate. Mauro Casubolo, 49, was one of the first clients as the pope's barbershop opened in the public restrooms just... More »

Pope: It's 'Selfish' Not to Have Children

After 'rabbits' remark, he praises big families again

(Newser) - Deciding not to have children is a "selfish choice," Pope Francis told an audience in St. Peter's Square yesterday, presumably referring to childless couples instead of people who take vows of celibacy. The pontiff—who said last month that Catholics shouldn't breed "like rabbits" —... More »

Pope's Sex Abuse Commission on Spanking Remarks: Um, No

Commission will recommend Francis revise his remarks

(Newser) - Members of Pope Francis' sex abuse commission have criticized his remarks that it is OK for parents to spank their children , saying there is no place for physical discipline and that the commission would be making recommendations to him about protecting kids from corporal punishment. The commission met with its... More »

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