Pope Francis

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Pope's New Year's Message: Dump Life's 'Useless Baggage'

Francis also told congregants: 'Do not extinguish' hopes of migrants, refugees

(Newser) - Jan. 1 isn't just New Year's Day for the Roman Catholic Church. It's also the World Day of Peace , and Pope Francis used the occasion Monday to remind 40,000 congregants at St. Peter's Square about the plight of one of the world's "weakest... More »

Topless Activist Tries to Steal Baby Jesus From Vatican

She's a member of Ukraine-based feminist group Femen

(Newser) - A topless "sextremist" attempted to grab the baby Jesus from a Nativity scene at the Vatican while yelling "God is woman" just hours before Pope Francis' Christmas Day address, Reuters reports. The woman, who also had "God is woman" painted on her back, hopped guardrails in St.... More »

Pope Warns of 'Winds of War'

Francis' Christmas message focuses on Mideast, Korea

(Newser) - Lamenting "the winds of war" blowing around the world, Pope Francis in his traditional Christmas message on Monday called for a two-state solution to find peace in the Middle East and prayed that confrontation can be overcome on the Korean Peninsula—taking particular aim at areas of global tension... More »

Pope Turns 81, Gets a Kid's Dream Meal

Pope Francis was treated to a 13-foot pizza for his birthday Sunday

(Newser) - Pope Francis has blown out his birthday candle on an extra-long pizza at the Vatican to the delight of children, reports the AP . Francis, who turned 81 on Sunday, then told the children, who use a Vatican health service, to "eat all four meters (13 feet)" saying it will... More »

Pope: Deliver Us From Bad Translation of Lord's Prayer

Francis wants to reword 'lead us not into temptation' line

(Newser) - The concept of temptation, and avoiding it, is something all Roman Catholics are made to confront throughout their liturgical lives. But Pope Francis is now saying if you feel that irresistible pull toward that which you shouldn't do, don't blame God for it. Specifically, per Reuters , the pontiff... More »

Pope Makes Waves by Not Saying a Word

Does not use term Rohingya in Myanmar speech

(Newser) - The will-he-or-won't-he has been answered: He won't. Pope Francis on Tuesday gave a keynote speech in Myanmar that was free of the word "Rohingya." Catholic leaders in the country had recommended he not use the term ; doing so would be viewed as a sign of support... More »

Pope Francis Advised to Avoid One Word in Myanmar

Cardinal recommends he not say 'Rohingya'

(Newser) - Pope Francis has spoken out about cigarettes , whiners , and a dying baby —and on Monday, some Catholics are watching to see if he avoids one subject entirely. The pope has touched down in Yangon, Myanmar, in what is the first visit any pope has ever made to the country.... More »

Pope Urges Traffic Police to Show Mercy to Drivers

But he's against people using cellphones while driving

(Newser) - Pope Francis says police should exercise the Christian virtue of mercy—even when dealing with Italy's notorious traffic. At a meeting with officers in charge of the nation's roads Monday, he praised their work but urged them to show mercy in the situations they encounter daily, the BBC... More »

Vote by US Bishops Seen as Call to Resist Pope Francis

Conference picks conservative archbishop, rejecting Francis ally

(Newser) - In a move seen as pushback against Pope Francis' agenda for the church, US Catholic bishops broke with tradition and elected a conservative archbishop to lead a top committee. The US Conference of Catholic Bishops voted 96 to 82 Tuesday to name Kansas City Archbishop Joseph Naumann chief of anti-abortion... More »

Pope Francis Takes Stand Against Cigarettes

'No profit can be legitimate if it puts lives at risk'

(Newser) - It turns out salvation wasn't the only thing people were looking to the Vatican for. The New York Times reports many Italians get their cigarettes through acquaintances at the Vatican, where employees and citizens have access to tax-free smokes. But no longer. According to the BBC , Pope Francis has... More »

Pope Francis Rips 'Very Ugly Thing' He Sees at Mass

Specifically, worshippers with their cellphones

(Newser) - When the priest says "lift up your hearts" during Mass, you'd better put your cellphone down while you do it. That was Pope Francis' message Wednesday during his weekly address in St. Peter's Square, calling it a "very ugly thing" to see worshippers—even other men... More »

Priests, Scholars Issue Measure Last Employed in 14th Century

They accuse Pope Francis of spreading heresy

(Newser) - Several dozen tradition-minded Roman Catholic theologians, priests, and academics have formally accused Pope Francis of spreading heresy with his 2016 opening to divorced and civilly remarried Catholics. In a 25-page letter delivered to Francis last month and provided Saturday to the AP , the 62 signatories issued a "filial correction"... More »

Pope Francis Says Trump Isn't 'Pro-Life' If He Ends DACA

The president gets another high-profile critic of his most recent immigration decision

(Newser) - Since President Trump made the decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, he has received criticism from across the political and social spectrum, from immigrants-rights groups and Fortune 500 CEOs to evangelical Christian preachers and Republican members of Congress. Now the president can add the pope to... More »

Pope Laughs Off Popemobile Mishap

'I was punched, I'm fine'

(Newser) - Pope Francis laughed off an accident in the Popemobile on Sunday that left him with a bruised eye and a bloodstained cassock. The 80-year-old quipped: "I was punched. I'm fine," as he continued his tour of Cartagena, Colombia, the Telegraph reports. The Vatican said Francis received ice... More »

Pope: Female Psychotherapist Helped 'Clarify Some Things'

Francis saw her when he was 42, back when he was just plain old Jorge Bergoglio

(Newser) - Pope Francis says that when he was 42 he had sessions weekly with a psychoanalyst who was female and Jewish to "clarify some things." It wasn't specified what the future pontiff wanted to explore, the AP notes. The revelation came in a dozen conversations Francis had with... More »

After Trump Snub, Spicer Finally Meets Pope Francis

Former press secretary attended pope's annual meeting for lawmakers

(Newser) - Sean Spicer finally got to meet the pope. The former White House press secretary attended an audience with Pope Francis Sunday as part of an annual meeting of the International Catholic Legislators Network, Vatican spokesman Greg Burke confirmed Tuesday. A photograph posted on Vatican Radio's English Facebook page from... More »

Pope Francis Has a Message for Whiners

Keep out

(Newser) - Is Pope Francis getting tired of hearing about everyone's problems? Probably not, but a new sign posted on his apartment door at the Vatican warns there's "no whining" allowed inside. The sign was actually a kind of gag gift from Italian psychologist and self-help author Salvo Noe,... More »

Pope Makes a Major Change to Sainthood

He adds a fourth pathway

(Newser) - Pope Francis has added a fourth pathway to possible sainthood. Until now, gaining consideration for sainthood in the Catholic Church required martyrdom, living a life of heroic values or—less frequently invoked—having a clear saintly reputation. The Vatican announced Tuesday that the pope has issued a new law outlining... More »

Pope Speaks on Dying Baby, Changes Vatican Position

Francis says parents should be allowed to do everything possible

(Newser) - Pope Francis has been following the heartbreaking case of Charlie Gard "with affection and sadness," and he believes the parents of the terminally ill British baby should be allowed to do everything possible to treat him, the Vatican said in a statement Sunday. "He prays that their... More »

Catholic Bishop Tells Priests: No Funerals for Gay Couples

The Bishop of Illinois also denies same-sex couples last rites

(Newser) - Two years after the Supreme Court made gay marriage legal, the bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield, Ill., has issued a decree instructing his priests to not only refuse to perform gay marriage services but to deny Holy Communion, last rites, and funeral services to members of same-sex... More »

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