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Vatican City, Jun 22, 2016 / 05:22 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Joined closely by just over a dozen refugees at his weekly public audience, Pope Francis said that in following Jesus’ example, the Christian excludes no one.“Jesus teaches us not to be afraid of touching the poor and the excluded, because he is in them,” said the Pope during his Wednesday audience catechesis in St. Peter’s Square.Just minutes prior to the pontiff’s arrival, after making the rounds in the Popemobile to bless and greet those present, he spontaneously invited 13 young refugees to join him on the stage before the public. They caught his attention with a banner that read “Refugees for a future together.”  As they sat cross-legged in a row, divided into groups on either side of him for the duration of the hour-long audience, Pope Francis referred to them as family.“They are our refugees, but so many consider them as excluded. Please, they are our brothers,” ...
(Vatican Radio) The European Union is anxiously looking towards the political turmoil in Britain where a countdown has begun towards Thursday's referendum on whether Britain should remain a member of the 28-nation bloc. Anxiety over a possible 'Brexit' has become evident especially in Eastern Europe and among the EU's top financial leaders as they closely follow the debate on Britain's future.   Listen to the report by Stefan Bos:  Leaders of the Leave and Remain have clashed in a live televised debate at the Wembley Arena in London on the eve of the final day of campaigning ahead of the referendum on Britain's EU membership. "The European Union was a noble dream in the last century. But today it has failed. It has turned into a nightmare, said Labor legislator Gisela Stuart of the Leave campaign. London's mayor Sadiq Khan disagrees. "If we as a country would like to quit, we are out for good. There is no turning back,...
(Vatican Radio) The Cardinal of Toronto has spoken out against last week’s decision by the Canadian government to legalize euthanasia and assisted suicide.Listen to Ann Schneible’s report:   Cardinal Thomas Collins of Toronto has issued a statement in a video message regarding the government's passage of Bill C-14, which legalized euthanasia and assisted suicide last Friday.In the message, the Canadian prelate criticized the use of the term “Medical Assistance in Dying,” saying the new law actually refers to killing. Cardinal Collins explained that the judges and legislators who made the decision to legalize assisted suicide has sent the country not only toward physical death, but also a spiritual death.“That death is found in a loss of respect for the dignity of the human person, in a deadening pressure upon the vulnerable to be gone, and in an assault upon the sanctuary of conscience to be suffered by good individuals and institut...
“In particular today, we remember one Sister, who was a specialist in Consolation so much so that the Church proclaimed her Blessed: Sr Irene Stefani “Nyaatha,”  the Mother of Mercy. We are proud that she was a member of our congregation (Consolata)” said the Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Maralal.The bishop was speaking during Mass at Sagana parish, 100 Kilometres north of Nairobi to mark the feast of Our Lady Consolata.In her speech, Sr Serafina Sergi, Regional Superior of the Consolata Missionary Sisters told hundreds of the faithful gathered to celebrate the day with the Consolata Missionaries that they should never turn away from Our Lady.“Indeed, this is a special day for us. The evangelization of non-Christians which is a purpose that characterises us in the Church finds inspiration in our Mother Consolata. She is the icon of the future of our religious congregations. Let us never allow our hearts to turn away from her, we cannot be hol...
Some 2,000 Bangladeshi Christians, from various denominations, gathered Monday to pray for humanity to wake up in the wake of growing Islamic terrorism, which has left a long trail of blood across the country.The ecumenical prayer service was held simultaneously in the Archdiocese of Dhaka and in the Diocese of Khulna. Participants called for action to stop a wave of violence by Islamic radicals against members of minorities, foreigners, students, professors, bloggers and secular activists.In the capital, the meeting took place in Holy Rosary Catholic Church in Tejgaon, which has the country’s largest Catholic congregation, more than 20,000 members.Fr Kamal Corraya spoke to AsiaNews about the event. "We live in fear because every day ordinary folks become victims of Islamic militants. For this reason, we urged Christian leaders to call on humanity to wake up.”Mgr Patrick D'Rozario, archbishop of Dhaka, led the prayer. Archbishop George Kocherry, apostolic nunc...
(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis on Wednesday held his weekly general audience, greeting the thousands of pilgrims and visitors gathered in a hot and sunny St Peter’s Square. During his catechesis, the Pope focused his reflections on the Gospel story of the leper who was healed by Jesus as a sign of God’s mercy and forgiveness.As Jesus reached out and touched the unclean man, he said, so we must never be afraid to reach out and touch the poor and those most in need. At the same time, he said, the Lord invites each of us to feel our own need and to ask for his healing touch.Please see below the English summary of the Pope’s words at his Wednesday General AudienceDear Brothers and Sisters:  In our continuing catechesis for this Holy Year of Mercy, we now consider Jesus’ healing of the leper (Lk 5:12-14).  As we know, lepers were considered unclean and bound by law to avoid contact with others. Saint Luke tells us that one leper, moved by faith, did...
(Vatican Radio) The Conference of European Churches has published an open letter calling on members, in view of the EU referendum in the United Kingdom, to contribute to a discussion on the future of Europe and the role of the Churches in the current situation.The letter emphasizes how Churches have for decades contributed to the European project of unity and cooperation and calls on them to be part of a process of dialogue and consultation in a time in which Europe faces an increasing number of challenges.Please find below the text of the CEC press release:At its regular meeting from 8 to 10 June in Brussels, the CEC Governing Board approved an open letter addressed to its membership and partner organisations on the current situation in Europe, where we are facing an increasing number of challenges.The upcoming EU referendum in the United Kingdom is just one sign of the difficulties facing the continent. Developments in Europe toward more unity and cooperation, so much appreciate...
I Kgs 19:16b, 19-21; Gal 5:1, 13-18; Lk 9: 51-62In 2006 a movie came out called Amazing Grace. It was the story of William Wilberforce, who is credited with being primarily responsible for the 23 February 1807 vote in England to abolish the slave trade. The vote was 283-16. But that vote doesn’t tell the story. Wilberforce spent 20 years pushing abolition. Few people in history were as stubborn as Wilberforce, and few people in history were as criticized as Wilberforce. In the 1790s he was slandered in the press, physically assaulted, subjected to numerous death threats and once challenged to a duel. During certain periods he had to travel with a bodyguard. His spirit was almost broken many times. He suffered a nervous breakdown. But in spite of all the dirt thrown at Wilberforce, he kept stomping and moving. He handled criticism, not by turning back and engaging his critics, but by kicking down the dirt and moving on toward his goal. He set his face toward the abolition of ...
NEW YORK (AP) -- Donald Trump launched a broad rebuke of his presidential rival Hillary Clinton Wednesday, accusing her of being "a world class liar" who personally profited from her tenure at the State Department. "She gets rich making you poor," Trump said....
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Latest on the U.S. presidential campaign. (all times EDT):...
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