In a wide-ranging interview published by Spanish newspaper El País, Pope Francis warned against forming an opinion about the new US President Donald Trump. "I think we must wait and see," he said. "I don't like to get ahead of myself nor judge people prematurely. We will see how he acts, what he does, and then I will have an opinion." He warned against premature reactions. "Being afraid or rejoicing beforehand, because of something that might happen, is, in my view, unwise," he said. Speaking about other world issues Pope Francis again expressed his concern over the "world war
During the Angelus on Sunday, Pope Francis focused on the early days of Jesus ministry, in Galilee. This region, the Holy Father noted, was a kind of crossroads between the Mediterranean and Mesopotamian lands. Because of the presence of large numbers of pagans, for the Jews Galilee was seen as a geographical periphery. Little was expected from Galilee in terms of the story of salvation - but it was precisely here that the light of the Gospel began to be diffused throughout the world, not only to the Jews, but also to the Gentiles. Here, following St John the Baptist, Jesus preached the coming of the
How can life go on? is the theme for Holocaust Memorial Day 2017, which will be marked this coming Friday, 27 January. The aftermath of the Holocaust and of subsequent genocides continues to raise challenging questions for individuals, communities and nations. HMD 2017 asks audiences to think about what happens after genocide and of our own responsibilities in the wake of such a crime. This year's theme is broad and open ended, there are few known answers.
.."we give thanks to the Father for the work that Saint Dominic, full of the light and the salt of Christ, accomplished 800 years ago; a work at the service of the Gospel, preached with words and with his life; a work that, with the grace of the Holy Spirit, has helped so many men and women to not lose themselves in the midst of the 'carnival' of worldly curiosity, but rather sense the taste of sound doctrine, the taste of the Gospel; who, in their turn, have become light and salt, doers of good works... and true brothers and sisters who glorify God, and teach others to glorify God, by the good works of their
The Jerusalem Legal Aid Centre (JLAC) is a pioneering Palestinian human rights organisation and CAFOD partner. Since its inception over 37 years ago, it has provided pro-bono legal aid and services to some of the poorest and most marginalised people and communities in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. JLAC's Director Mr Issam Aruri and EU Project Coordinator Ms Shu'la Abdelhadi will be speaking about the realities of life under occupation on Saturday 28 January from 11am - 1pm in Birmingham and on Monday, 30 January in Southwark.
Women's marches were held in dozens of cities around the world yesterday, to voice their concerns over the incoming administration of President Donald Trump. In London more than 100,000 women walked from the American embassy in Grosvenor Square to Trafalgar Square - among them were individuals and representatives from many Christian churches and organisations. Pat Gaffney, General Secretary of Pax Christi told ICN: "Pax Christi thought it important to have a peace and justice presence at the Women's March today. We had two aspects to our message: 'No to fear and division',
Pope Francis received members of the Apostolic Tribunal of the Roman Rota on Saturdya, for the inauguration of the judicial year In his address the Holy Father spoke about the relationship between faith and marriage. Quoting from his predecessors including Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, he noted the importance of Love and Truth. "Love needs truth", Pope Francis said. "Just as it is based on truth, love can last over time, overcome the ephemeral moment and stand firm to support a common path.
"Is Christ divided? Who was crucified for you? In whose name were you baptized?' Three of the questions Paul puts to the Corinthians, but they are just as appropriate for each one of us, the more so when we start looking at the way Christianity itself has been fragmented over time! In the week of Christian Unity it is time we let go of our spiritual baggage and travel light, responding to the ever-present call of Jesus to follow him. However we need to remind ourselves just what road it is that Jesus calls us to travel! It's not some vague spiritual journey,
Pope Francis has sent his good wishes to United States President Donald Trump on the day of his inauguration. "At a time when our human family is beset by grave humanitarian crises demanding far-sighted and united political responses, I pray that your decisions will be guided by the rich spiritual and ethical values that have shaped the history of the American people and your nation's commitment to the advancement of human dignity and freedom worldwide" ... "Under your leadership, may America's stature continue to be measured above all by its concern for the poor, the outcast and those in need
Pope Francis met with the Irish bishops on Friday, during their ad limina visit to Rome. Less than half of the bishops had been on an ad limina visit before, and they were all impressed by the level of openness and dialogue they discovered in all the offices of the Roman Curia and particularly in their closed door, informal and unscripted conversation with the Pope. Archbishop Eamon Martin, president of the Irish bishops conference, said: "He (Pope Francis) said at the beginning, 'I'll throw in the ball and let's see what happens',
We live in difficult times: shaky economy, corrupt politics, social disorder, the widening gap between rich and poor, rampant violence in many forms, the list can go on. There is a temptation to think in 'end of the world' terms. One sees a strong strand of fundamentalism re-emerging in religion and populism in politics, both using a language of the enemy outside (the threat) and fundamentalist formulas proclaiming certainties to combat them (the solution). Whether of the Left or Right, fundamentalism and populism create an 'Us/Good vs. Them/Evil' dualism to explain and solve the world's
Pope Francis has called on Christians to overcome the self-centered mindset of the doctors of the law who know only how to condemn. Reflecting on the day's reading from the Letter to the Hebrews, during morning Mass in Casa Santa Marta, the Pope said the new covenant which God makes with us in Jesus Christ renews our heart. God renews all things "from the roots, not only in appearance," he said. "This new covenant has its own characteristics." First, he said, "the law of the Lord is not an external way of acting" rather, it enters the heart and "changes our mindset", as well as
Aid to the Church in Need has received reports that extremist Islamists are carrying out daily atrocities against Christians - including kidnapping and murder. A source, who asked to remain anonymous for security reasons said: "There are many extremists Muslims who commit horrific acts every day - every day we hear about another Christian being murdered... Every day we hear about a fight, a revenge... Al Saed is full of these extremists." Al Saed is a region in southern Egypt, covering the south of Cairo, the Suez Canal area and the Sinai Peninsula.
The Apostolic Nuncio to Great Britain, His Excellency Monsignor Antonio Mennini, is being transferred from his current responsibilities, at the request of Pope Francis, to serve directly in the Secretariat of State of the Holy See, assisting in its work in relation to States. In this capacity, Archbishop Mennini will serve the Holy Father with particular reference to the State of Italy. In a statement Cardinal Vincent Nichols said today: "Archbishop Mennini has served as Apostolic Nuncio to Great Britain for nearly six years,
The intention of Martin Luther five hundred years ago "was to renew the Church, not divide her", Pope Francis said on Thursday, when he met an Ecumenical Delegation from Finland, in the Vatican to take part in the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. The Pope recalled his visit to Sweden last October and said that the "gathering there gave us the courage and strength, in our Lord Jesus Christ, to look ahead to the ecumenical journey that we are called to walk together." The Pope ended his speech with off-the-cuff remarks thanking the bishop leading the delegation for having brought his
Thousands have signed a petition objecting to Washington's Episcopalian National Cathedral, hosting the traditional interfaith prayer service on Saturday morning, as part of the presidential inauguration for Donald Trump and Mike Pence. The service will feature prayers, readings and musical performances. Fr Gary Hall, who served as dean of the Cathedral from 2012 to 2015, said: "I think the faith community should be a centre of resistance against Donald Trump's vision in America." He said that he felt that the service "legitimizes Trump." But the current Dean,
The history of Christianity in Europe is marked by sorrowful periods of division, mutual condemnation, and even violence. As a number of churches prepare to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the beginnings of the Protestant Reformation, we are reminded anew of our difficult past. Recalling these events and confronting our history is a precious opportunity to renew our commitment to the healing of wounds and overcoming divisions. We turn to Christ, who reconciles all people and all creation to God, to guide us in this work. In humble gratitude for this gift,
Pax Christi International is looking for Young Peace Journalists to give a voice to people seeking refuge. Pax Christi International is building up a young peace journalist team from all over the world to report about the lives of refugees, migrants, asylum seekers, and displaced persons. As part of the team you will organise an interview with a person from these groups in your hometown or area. Full online training will be given. The international team of peace journalists will use their work for awareness raising, influencing policy makers,
A series of celebratory events from May to November 2017 is planned to mark the fiftieth anniversary of the consecration of the Metropolitan Cathedral of Christ the King in 1967. The Cathedral is one of the country's most iconic symbols of faith, worship and community, hosting over thirty services a week. It is the mother church of the Archdiocese of Liverpool and also one of Liverpool's major civic buildings and a world-class visitor attraction, welcoming over 350,000 visitors a year.
Many events are being planned throughout this year in Poland to celebrate the Jubilee of the crowning of the image of Our Lady of Czestochowa. Last month (15 December) the Polish Parliament adopted a resolution declaring 2017 a Jubilee year. Pope Clement XI canonically crowned the image of Our Lady of Czestochowa on September 8, 1717. The Jubilee began with a special Mass at Jasna Góra monastery, where the Icon is kept, celebrated by Archbishop Stanislaw Gadecki on 8 September 2016. On December 8, a plenary indulgence was granted by Pope Francis which can be
A court in Reading is preparing to try five peace campaigners for taking nonviolent direct action, despite several recent cases in which peace activists have been acquitted after being arrested at similar protests. The campaigners, who are all in their thirties, will be tried by a District Judge at Reading Magistrates' Court on Monday 23rd, Wednesday 25th and Thursday 26th January. They blocked an entrance to the Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE) in Berkshire last June and are charged with 'wilful obstruction of the highway'.
At this critical moment, as my fellow Church leaders have already done this week, I offer a message to our politicians and all who serve in the civil and political sphere. Consider carefully your responsibility and noble vocation to work for the common good. The premature collapse of our political institutions so soon after the last election is a serious matter for all of us and cannot be taken lightly. The sense I am picking up from people on the ground is that it risks further disillusionment with the political process.
Fifty years of occupation demands action, is the call of the Holy Land Coordination bishops at the end of this year's meeting. Describing the occupation as a scandal that violates the human dignity of both Palestinians and Israelis, the bishops called for an end to the suffering on both sides. While many people in the Holy Land strive for reconciliation, most have now lived their entire lives under occupation, with its polarising social segregation. The bishops implored Christians in their respective countries to recognise their own responsibility for prayer, awareness and action.
For fifty years the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza have languished under occupation. An occupation - reads the final communiqué of the Holy Land Coordination 2017 - that violates the human dignity of both Palestinians and Israelis. As the group of Catholic Bishops who make up the 'Holy Land Coordination' finish this year's pilgrimage in support of those enduring the occupation, it is calling for justice and peace in the Holy Land and reminding the rest of us that "it is a scandal to which we must never become accustomed."
Christian Unity and reconciliation are possible, Pope Francis said, when he greeted an Ecumenical delegation from Germany, during his weekly General Audience with pilgrims in the Paul the VI Hall. Recalling this Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, the Holy Father said we look to "that which unites us - rather than that which divide," and he invited Christians to pray for this week. The Pope also recalled his visit to Lund in Sweden to commemorate the Reformation, saying: "we continue the journey together to deepen our communion and to give it more and more a 'visible form."