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Author Topic: Pope Francis  (Read 1590311 times)
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« Reply #940 on: December 13, 2013, 12:55:07 PM »

http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2013/12/13/one_year_on_from_first_papal_tweet/en1-755337

2013-12-13 12:11:45
One year on from first papal tweet



(Vatican Radio) On December 12th last year, the former pontiff Benedict XVI made news headlines across the globe by inaugurating the Vatican’s first Twitter account. One year later, that account - @Pontifex – available in nine languages including Latin – now has close to 11 million followers who receive regular tweets of the thoughts and words of Pope Francis. Furthermore those short spiritual messages are then re-tweeted and reach around 60 million people worldwide.

To find out what impact this initiative has had, Alessandro Gisotti spoke with the head of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, Archbishop Claudio Celli…
Listen: RealAudioMP3

I think the choice of Papa Benedict was really prophetic….when we were proposing to the Holy Father to open an account, we were considering clearly the difficulties and the dangers of entering such a reality….but we thought it was good to be present….to use a language that young men and women are using normally in their daily lives…

The wish of the Holy Father was to be heard and understood by the young generation….today at least 60 million people are receiving on their smartphone the tweet of the Holy Father.
 
------------------------
December 13, 2013 Tweet

https://twitter.com/Pontifex

Pope Francis ‏@Pontifex  3h 
Don’t be afraid to go to the Sacrament of Confession, where you will meet Jesus who forgives you.
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« Reply #941 on: December 13, 2013, 01:00:09 PM »

http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2013/12/13/pope_francis:_friday_homily_focuses_on_scandal_of_preaching/en1-755420

2013-12-13 14:53:57
Pope Francis: Friday homily focuses on scandal of preaching

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis celebrated Mass in the chapel of the Domus Sanctae Marthae residence in the Vatican this Friday morning, focusing his remarks on the attitude of some Christians who seem to be “allergic” to preachers and overly critical of those who proclaim the Gospel, suggesting that they are often afraid of letting the Holy Spirit into their lives and are therefore prone to profound sadness. Listen: RealAudioMP3

In his remarks to the faithful following the readings of the day, Pope Francis focused on the day's Gospel, drawn from that according to St Matthew (11:16-19). There, Jesus compares the generation of his time to always unhappy children, explaining that they were, “not open to the Word of God.” Their refusal, he explained, was not of the message, but of the messenger. “They reject John the Baptist,” he said, who came, “neither eating nor drinking ,” saying of him that he was “a man possessed.” They reject Jesus because they say, “He is a glutton, a drunkard, a friend of publicans and sinners.” They always have a reason to criticize the preacher:

“The people of that time preferred to take refuge in a more elaborate religion: in the moral precepts, such as the group of Pharisees; in political compromise, as the Sadducees; in social revolution, as the zealots; in gnostic spirituality, such as Essenes. They were [happy] with their clean, well-polished system. The preacher, however, was not [so pleased]. Jesus reminded them: ‘Your fathers did the same with the prophets.’ The people of God have a certain allergy to the preachers of the Word: they persecuted the prophets, [even] killed them.”
 
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« Reply #942 on: December 13, 2013, 01:06:53 PM »

http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2013/12/13/pope_thanks_bavarians_for_vatican_christmas_trees/en1-755368

2013-12-13 13:04:08
Pope thanks Bavarians for Vatican Christmas trees



(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis on Friday received members of a pilgrimage from Bavaria, in south-eastern Germany, who donated the Christmas tree that stands in St Peter’s Square. The lights will be switched on the tree during a brief ceremony on Friday afternoon and in his words to the delegation, the Pope reflected on the way the Christ Child continues to bring a great light into the darkness of our world today. Philippa Hitchen reports….
Listen: RealAudioMP3

The Bavarian town of Waldmunchen, close to the border with the Czech Republic, this year brought to Rome the giant fir tree for St Peter’s Square, together with other smaller trees that decorate different parts of the Vatican. Speaking to the town’s civil and religious authorities, who formed part of a large pilgrimage to Rome, Pope Francis noted with gratitude that the impressive tree will remain in the square throughout the Christmas festivities, bringing pleasure to locals and visitors from all over the world. He also spoke of the way Christianity, over the centuries, has enriched German culture and that of Bavaria in a very particular way.
 
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« Reply #943 on: December 14, 2013, 12:05:34 PM »

http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2013/12/14/pope_visits_sick_children_at_pediatric_dispensary_of_saint_martha/en1-755732

2013-12-14 14:41:47
Pope visits sick children at Pediatric Dispensary of Saint Martha

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis on Saturday morning visited the Pediatric Dispensary of Santa Marta in the Vatican.

Then, at the Paul VI Hall, he met the children cared for at the Dispensary, along with their families and the volunteers who, every day, serve in the charitable institution, which is entrusted to the Daughters of Charity of Saint Vincent de Paul.

The children surprised the Holy Father with a small party ahead of his 77th birthday (December 17), giving him a cake and a sweater. “I thank you for this visit,” the Pope said in a brief address. “Thank you for the love you have, the joy of these children, the gifts, the cake ... It was beautiful! Later I’ll tell you it was good or not. Thank you so much! May the Lord bless you.” Then he affectionately greeted the children one by one.
 
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« Reply #944 on: December 14, 2013, 12:13:00 PM »

http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2013/12/13/cardinal_koch_to_meet_russian_orthodox_patriarch_in_moscow/en1-755535

2013-12-14 08:49:18
Cardinal Koch to meet Russian Orthodox Patriarch in Moscow

(Vatican Radio) The President of the Pontifical Council for Christian Unity, Cardinal Kurt Koch, heads off to Russia on Saturday for a visit being seen as an important milestone on the road towards reconciliation between the Catholic and Russian Orthodox Churches. The Swiss Cardinal will spend five days in St Petersburg and Moscow, celebrating with the small Catholic communities there, as well as meeting with Russian Orthodox bishops, priests and seminarians.

On the final day of his trip, Wednesday 18th, he will hold talks with Russia’s vice-minister of foreign affairs and with the Russian Orthodox leader, Patriarch Kirill at Moscow’s historic Cathedral of Christ the Saviour.

Accompanying the cardinal is Dominican Fr Hyacinthe Destivelle, former dean of St Catherine’s church in St Petersburg and currently heading the desk for relations with the Russian Orthodox Church at the Vatican’s Council for Christian Unity. Philippa Hitchen caught up with him to find out more about the visit and whether it could pave the way for a possible meeting between the Pope and the Patriarch……
 
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« Reply #945 on: December 14, 2013, 12:18:17 PM »

http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2013/12/14/bambinelli_sunday_in_st._peters_square/en1-755776

2013-12-14 15:58:14
Bambinelli Sunday in St. Peter's Square



(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis was scheduled to recite the Angelus for Gaudete Sunday, the third Sunday of Advent. A tradition has arisen in Rome, where children take to baby Jesus from their nativity scene to St. Peter’s Square to be blessed by the Pope.

This blessing forms the backdrop for the children’s book Bambinelli Sunday: A Christmas Blessing, by writer Amy Welborn and artist Ann Kissane Engelhart.

“Several years ago Pope Benedict had done the Angelus blessing with the children on this great day – Gaudete Sunday, Engelhart told Vatican Radio. “And it was a beautiful prayer, and I had seen these wonderful images of these kids holding these figures of Jesus – some of them tiny, some of them really quite large. It was just a really festive atmosphere, and we thought it would be a wonderful way to try and help the tradition spread outside of Rome.”
 
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« Reply #946 on: December 14, 2013, 09:05:22 PM »

http://www.freep.com/article/20131214/NEWS07/312140082/Pope-Francis-crackdown-religious-order-riles-traditionalist-Catholics

Pope Francis' crackdown on religious order riles traditionalist Catholics
6:03 PM, December 14, 2013

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis may have been named Time magazine’s Person of the Year, but he has come under scathing criticism from a growing number of traditionalist Catholics for cracking down on a religious order that celebrates the old Latin mass. The case has become a flashpoint in the ideological tug-of-war going on in the Catholic Church over Francis’ revolutionary agenda, which has thrilled progressives and alarmed some conservatives.

The matter concerns the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate, a small but growing order of several hundred priests, seminarians and nuns that was founded in Italy in 1990 as an offshoot of the larger Franciscan order of the pope’s namesake, St. Francis of Assisi.

Then-Pope Benedict XVI launched an investigation into the congregation after five of its priests complained that the order was taking on an overly traditionalist bent, with the old Latin mass being celebrated more and more at the expense of the liturgy in the vernacular.
 
In July, the Vatican named the Rev. Fidenzio Volpi, a Franciscan Capuchin friar, as a special commissioner to run the order with a mandate to quell the dissent that had erupted over the liturgy, improve unity within its ranks and get a handle on its finances.
 
And on Dec. 8, he took action, issuing a series of sanctions in the name of the pope that have stunned observers for their seeming severity:

■ He closed the friars’ seminary and sent its students to other religious universities in Rome.

■ He suspended the activities of the friars’ lay movement.

■ He suspended ordinations of new priests for a year and required future priests to formally accept the teachings of the Second Vatican Council and its new liturgy or be kicked out.

■ He decreed that current priests must commit themselves in writing to following the existing mission of the order

In a letter detailing the new measures, Volpi accused friars loyal to Manelli of seeking to undermine him and accused some of embezzlement. He denounced a cult of personality that had grown around Manelli, saying it “reveals a great spiritual poverty and psychological dependence that is incompatible with” life in a religious community.

The sanctions seem harsh when compared to recent actions taken by the Vatican against other much larger religious orders or groups found to have doctrinal or other problems, such as the Holy See’s crackdown on social justice-minded American nuns or the Vatican’s reform efforts of the disgraced Legion of Christ. In both cases, a papal envoy was named to rewrite constitutions or statutes and oversee reforms, but Volpi’s actions with the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate would appear to go much farther.
 
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« Reply #947 on: December 14, 2013, 11:54:58 PM »

http://www.mediaite.com/online/pope-francis-addresses-ultraconservatives-and-limbaugh-calling-him-a-marxist/

Pope Francis Addresses ‘Ultraconservatives’ (and Limbaugh?) Calling Him a Marxist
9:19 pm, December 14th, 2013

Here’s one for the history books: Pope Francis, the leader of the Catholic Church, actually responded to by Rush Limbaugh. Yes. Really. Not by name, though, but His Holiness did address the accusation that he’s a Marxist, an accusation lobbed most notably by Limbaugh just a few weeks ago.

It hasn’t just been Limbaugh going after the Pope for his views on capitalism, it’s been other conservative and libertarian voices like Fox’s Andrew Napolitano, who wrote a scatting editorial on His Holiness, Sarah Palin, who found it striking how “liberal” the Catholic leader sounds, and a Fox News columnist who argued that Pope Francis is actually the “Catholic Church’s Obama.”

During an interview with Italian newspaper La Stampa, the Pope was asked about comments by “ultraconservatives” that in his remarks denouncing unfettered capitalism, he was preaching Marxism. This is what Pope Francis had to say.

“Marxist ideology is wrong. But I have met many Marxists in my life who are good people, so I don’t feel offended.”

He also said that everything he spoke of can “be found in the social Doctrine of the Church.”
 
-------------------------
And from the La Stampa interview...

http://www.lastampa.it/2013/12/14/esteri/vatican-insider/en/never-be-afraid-of-tenderness-5BqUfVs9r7W1CJIMuHqNeI/pagina.html
14/12/2013
"Never be afraid of tenderness"

 
On the subject of children’s suffering, Francis says: “When I come across a suffering child, the only prayer that comes to mind is the “why” prayer. Why Lord?” In response to the criticism he received after the publication of the “Evangelii Gaudium” from ultraconservatives in the US who accused him of being a “Marxist”, the Pope remarks: “Marxist ideology is wrong. But I have met many Marxists in my life who are good people, so I don’t feel offended.” But, he points out, “there is nothing in the Exhortation that cannot be found in the social Doctrine of the Church.”



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« Reply #948 on: December 15, 2013, 08:54:23 PM »

http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2013/12/15/pope_francis:_the_church_is_a_house_of_joy/en1-755857

2013-12-15 12:48:35
Pope Francis: the Church is a house of joy

(Vatican Radio) “The Christian message is called the ‘Gospel,’ that is, ‘the good news,’ an announcement of joy for all people; the Church is not a refuge for sad people, the Church is a house of joy.”

In his Angelus message on the Third Sunday of Advent, Pope Francis reminded us that the day is also called “Gaudete Sunday,” “Rejoice Sunday.” The Liturgy, he said, is filled with calls to rejoice, to be joyful, in order to prepare us to celebrate the feast of Christmas with renewed exultation.

But, he said, the joy of the Gospel is not just any kind of joy. It is the joy that comes from knowing that you are welcomed and loved by God. Pope Francis pointed to Sunday’s reading from the Prophet Isaiah, which tells us that God is a God who comes to save us, and especially to lift up those who have lost heart. “However great our limits and our losses, we are not allowed to be weak and vacillating in the face of difficulties and our own weaknesses.” On the contrary, he said, we are called to be strong, “to strengthen the hands, to make firm the knees, to have courage and not be afraid, because our God always shows the greatness of His mercy.” With His help, we can start anew and overcome sadness and tears, we can “sing a new song.”
 
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« Reply #949 on: December 15, 2013, 08:59:23 PM »

http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2013/12/15/interview_with_the_pope:_christmas_is_the_encounter_with_jesus/en1-755913

2013-12-15 16:23:44
Interview with the Pope: Christmas is the encounter with Jesus

(Vatican Radio) “Christmas for me is hope and tenderness . . .” The latest interview with Pope Francis, given to the Italian newspaper “La Stampa” begins with a reflection on the meaning of Christmas. In an hour and a half long conversation with Vaticanista Andrea Tornielli, the Pope addressed the themes of the suffering of children and the tragedy of world hunger; the relationship between the Catholic Church and other Christian bodies; and questions about marriage and the family, the focus of next year’s Extraordinary meeting of the Synod of Bishops.

As the first Christmas of his pontificate approaches, Pope explained how to live the season with his usual simplicity: “It is the encounter with Jesus.” Christmas is an encounter between God and His people. And it is also a consolation, “a mystery of consolation.” Christmas, the Pope said, “speaks to us about tenderness and hope.” It is an invitation to all Christians to not become “a cold Church, that doesn’t know where it’s going, that is tied up in ideologies, in worldly attitudes.” Pope Francis responds to the critics and the stereotypes of those who would trivialize the celebration of Christmas with a few persuasive words: “When one doesn’t have the capacity, or is there is a human situation that doesn’t permit you to understand this joy, you live the feast with a worldly cheer. But between the profound joy and mundane cheerfulness there is a difference.”
 
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« Reply #950 on: December 15, 2013, 09:50:13 PM »

At the link -- Full interview (Q and A) of Pope Francis and La Stampa...

http://www.lastampa.it/2013/12/14/esteri/vatican-insider/en/never-be-afraid-of-tenderness-5BqUfVs9r7W1CJIMuHqNeI/pagina.html

14/12/2013
"Never be afraid of tenderness"

In this exclusive interview, Pope Francis speaks about Christmas, hunger in the world, the suffering of children, the reform of the Roman Curia, women cardinals, the Institute for the Works of Religion (IOR), and the upcoming visit to the Holy Land.

andrea tornielli (vatican insider)

 “For me Christmas is hope and tenderness...”. Francis talks to “La Stampa” and “Vatican Insider” about his first Christmas as Bishop of Rome. We’re in Casa Santa Marta in the Vatican; it’s 12:50 in the afternoon on Tuesday 10 December. The Pope receives us in a room next to the dining hall. The meeting lasts an hour and a half. Twice during the course of the interview, the peaceful look which the whole world has grown accustomed to seeing on Francis’ face fades away when he talks about the innocent suffering of children and the tragedy of hunger in the world.

During the interview the Pope also speaks about relations with other Christian denominations and about the “ecumenism of blood” which unites them in persecution, he touches on the issue of the family to be addressed at the next Synod, responds to those in the USA who criticised him and called him “a Marxist” and discusses the relationship between Church and politics.
 

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« Reply #951 on: December 16, 2013, 12:46:31 PM »

http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2013/12/16/pope_francis:_without_prophecy,_only_clericalism/en1-756052

2013-12-16 12:38:07
Pope Francis: without prophecy, only clericalism

(Vatican Radio) A church without prophets falls into the trap of clericalism. These were the words of Pope Francis during his homily at Mass on Monday morning in the Vatican’s Casa Santa Marta.

Commenting on the day’s readings, Pope Francis said a prophet is someone who listens to the words of God, who reads the spirit of the times, and who knows how to move forward towards the future. True prophets, the Pope said, hold within themselves three different moments: past, present, and future. They keep the promise of God alive, they see the suffering of their people, and they bring us the strength to look ahead.

God looks after his people, the Pope continued, by giving them prophets in the hardest times, in the midst of their worst suffering. But when there is no spirit of prophecy amongst the people of God, we fall into the trap of clericalism.

In the Gospel, for example, the priests ask Jesus: “With what authority do you do these things? We are the masters of the Temple!” They didn’t understand the prophecy, Pope Francis said, they had forgotten the promise. They didn’t know how to read the spirit of the times, they didn’t listen to the words of God, they had only their authority.

When there is no prophecy amongst the people of God, the emptiness that is created gets filled by clericalism. All memory of the past and hope for the future are reduced only to the present: no past promise, no future hope. But when clericalism reigns supreme, Pope Francis said, the words of God are sorely missed, and true believers weep because they cannot find the Lord.
 
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« Reply #952 on: December 16, 2013, 12:51:06 PM »

Awww...what a beautiful tradition!   

Video at the link

http://www.romereports.com/pg155130-pope-francis-blesses-the-bambinelli-during-sunday-angelus-en

Pope Francis blesses the 'bambinelli' during Sunday Angelus
2013-12-16

On the third Sunday of Advent, despite the winter weather, thousands of children came to St. Peter's Square, each holding their tiny figures of Baby Jesus, as a part of a yearly tradition. For his first time as Bishop of Rome, Pope Francis blessed the tiny figures and the children holding them.

POPE FRANCIS
"Dear children, when you pray before your Nativity set, remember to pray for me. As I remember you all. I thank you and Merry Christmas!”

They were joined by their families and thousands of the pilgrims that packed the Square. Not even the rain could keep them away.
 
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« Reply #953 on: December 16, 2013, 01:02:02 PM »

http://www.thetablet.co.uk/news/210/0/francis-rings-the-changes-and-internationalises-top-vatican-board-that-nominates-bishops

Francis rings the changes and internationalises top Vatican board that nominates bishops
16 December 2013 12:24

Pope Francis has re-confirmed Cardinal Marc Ouellet PSS, 69, as prefect of the Congregation for Bishops, an office he has headed since 2010.

But the Pope today also significantly altered the congregation’s membership by replacing three leading conservatives – including US Cardinal Raymond Burke, 65.

Among the new faces is 68-year-old Archbishop Vincent Nichols of Westminster.

The conservative Cardinal Burke is considered a leading “culture warrior” and proponent of the pre-Vatican II Mass. After five years as Archbishop of St Louis, he was appointed by Benedict XVI as head of the Apostolic Signatura (the Church’s “supreme court”) in 2008. Two years later Benedict XVI gave him the red hat.

Pope Francis also terminated the services of two other cardinals considered strong allies to Benedict XVI, both of whom are Italians – Mauro Piacenza, 69, currently head of the Apostolic Penitentiary, believed to be one of the former pope’s most conservative appointments in the Roman Curia; and Angelo Bagnasco, 70, the man Benedict XVI named as Archbishop of Genoa in 2006 and then president of the Italian Bishops’ Conference.
 
----------------------
http://whispersintheloggia.blogspot.com/
Monday, December 16, 2013
Francis' Flush – At Bishops' Table, Pope Runs the Wuerlpool

Honestly, Eminence, it's even bigger than that.

While a Franciscan flush of the membership of the Congregation for Bishops has been expected for months, the move's execution came with a flourish at Roman Noon as the Pope dumped roughly half the prior makeup of the all-powerful "Thursday table" that recommends nominees for episcopal appointments in the developed world.

Topping the slate of his new picks, Francis tapped Cardinal Donald Wuerl of Washington to join the body's membership. Already a member of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith on B16's nod, the 73 year-old ever-meticulous DC prelate (a veteran of the Curia from his early days overseeing the Congregation for the Clergy as priest-secretary to Cardinal John Wright) becomes the table's lone resident member on these shores...
 
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« Reply #954 on: December 17, 2013, 02:24:09 AM »

Happy Birthday, Pope Francis!   

http://wdtprs.com/blog/2013/12/17-dec-77th-birthday-of-his-holiness-pope-francis/

17 Dec: 77th Birthday of His Holiness Pope Francis
Posted on 17 December 2013 by Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

On this day in 1936, Jorge Mario Bergoglio was born in Buenos Aires to Mario José Bergoglio and his wife Regina María Sívori.

Pope Francis, 266th Successor of Peter, is now 77.

Pray for him today (and obtain a partial indulgence).

You might also say a prayer for his parents as well.
 
   
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« Reply #955 on: December 17, 2013, 11:59:50 AM »

http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2013/12/17/pope_francis_celebrates_mass_with_4_homeless_men_on_his_77th_birthday/en1-756346

2013-12-17 12:44:04
Pope Francis celebrates mass with 4 homeless men on his 77th birthday



Pope Francis turned 77 on Tuesday and celebrated Mass in the Santa Marta guesthouse with 4 homeless men, his closest collaborators and staff from the guesthouse, all of whom afterwards greeted him with a birthday song.
Listen to this report by Susy Hodges: RealAudioMP3

It was Pope Francis’s 77th birthday on Tuesday and those present at his morning Mass included Archbishop Pietro Parolin, the Secretary of State and Cardinal Angelo Sodano, the Dean of the College of Cardinals, together with staff from the Santa Marta guesthouse. The congregation also included the Almoner Monsignor Konrad Krajewski who brought with him 4 homeless men who live in the streets around the Vatican. After the mass, all those present wished the Pope a happy birthday and sang greetings to him before joining him for breakfast in the Vatican guesthouse.

Today’s reading was centered on the genealogy of Jesus and the Pope used this in his homily to reflect on God’s enduring presence in our lives throughout history. He said “God wished to live out his life alongside us” and “took his surname from each of us.”
 
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« Reply #956 on: December 17, 2013, 12:03:10 PM »

http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2013/12/17/best_wishes_as_pope_francis_turns_77/en1-756278

2013-12-17 09:59:00
Best wishes as Pope Francis turns 77



(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis is 77 years old today, Tuesday, December 17th. Among the many plans for marking the recurrence are a special visit from a delegation of players and managers from San Lorenzo de Almagro, the Holy Father’s favorite soccer club (to which he is also chaplain), who will present him with their recent league championship trophy.

Festivities began at the weekend, with the young patients served by the Vatican's pediatric dispensary singing "Happy Birthday to the Holy Father during the course of their audience with him in PaulVI Hall. Faithful well-wishers are also sending the Holy Father a four-foot-tall birthday card featuring a depiction of “Mary, Un-doer of Knots”, which is one of Mary’s honorific titles that is dear to Pope Francis.
 
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« Reply #957 on: December 18, 2013, 04:21:54 PM »

http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2013/12/18/pope_francis:_jesus_is_god-with-us/en1-756655

2013-12-18 12:24:00
Pope Francis: Jesus is God-with-us

(Vatican Radio) At his weekly General Audience, Pope Francis turned his attention to the Feast of the Nativity. “This our encounter,” he said, “is taking place in the spiritual climate of Advent, made even more intense by the Novena of the Holy Nativity that we are living in these days, and that leads us to the Christmas holidays.” The Holy Father reflected on the Nativity of Jesus, “the feast of confidence and hope, that overcomes uncertainty and pessimism.” The reason for our hope, he said, is this: “God is with us, and God still trusts us.
 

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« Reply #958 on: December 18, 2013, 04:28:16 PM »

http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2013/12/18/peter_faber,_sj:_discovering_the_churchs_newest_saint/en1-756642

2013-12-18 12:13:05
Peter Faber, SJ: discovering the Church's newest Saint



(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis on Tuesday evening signed a decree canonizing Blessed Peter Faber, SJ. Faber was born on April 13th, 1506. A Frenchman, he was a founding member of the Society of Jesus and the first of St Ignatius Loyola’s fledgling company to be ordained a priest. He was a key instrument in the efforts to bring Germans back to the fullness of the faith following the Lutheran reformation. Although he was a theologian of repute, Bl. Peter Faber did not relish theoretical disputation – preferring instead to emphasize reform of the interior life and discipline of the affections. The man now venerated as St Peter Faber was a careful listener and sensitive confessor who was also a master conductor of the signature Spiritual Exercises of St Ignatius. 
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« Reply #959 on: December 18, 2013, 04:32:59 PM »

http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2013/12/18/pope_meets_speaker_of_latvian_parliament/en1-756785

2013-12-18 16:35:37
Pope meets Speaker of Latvian Parliament

(Vatican Radio) The Speaker of the Latvian Parliament, Solvita Aboltina, had a private meeting with Pope Francis in the Vatican on Wednesday morning. During the audience she shared with the Holy Father some of the challenges that her country has faced since the end of Soviet occupation over two decades ago. Recalling the visit of Pope John Paul II to Latvia in 1993, she also spoke about the role of the Churches today in providing moral guidance and support as the country struggles to emerge from its economic crisis and become a fully-fledged member of the Eurozone. Philippa Hitchen spoke to Mrs Aboltina just after her audience with the Holy Father:
 
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