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Christians should apologize for helping to marginalize gays, pope says

Posted July 8, 2016 at 12:00 am

ABOARD THE PAPAL FLIGHT FROM ARMENIA – (CNS) Catholics and other Christians not only must apologize to the gay community, they must ask forgiveness of God for ways they have discriminated against homosexual persons or fostered hostility toward them, Pope Francis said.

“I think the church not only must say it is sorry to the gay person it has offended, but also to the poor, to exploited women” and anyone whom the church did not defend when it could, he told reporters June 26.

Spending close to an hour answering questions from reporters traveling with him, Pope Francis was asked to comment on remarks reportedly made a few days previously by Cardinal Reinhard Marx, president of the German bishops’ conference,

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    English bishops condemn rise in xenophobic attacks after Brexit vote

    MANCHESTER, England – (CNS) Catholic bishops condemned a sharp rise in xenophobic and racist attacks following Britain’s vote to leave the European Union.

    Cardinal Vincent Nichols of Westminster said the “upsurge of racism, of hatred toward others is something we must not tolerate.”

    “We have to say this is simply not acceptable in a humane society, and it should never be provoked or promoted,” he said.

    A

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    World Youth Day in Poland ‘will involve long walks’

    WARSAW, Poland (CNS) –  Young people attending World Youth Day 2016 in Krakow, Poland, will have to walk 18 miles to and from one of its key sites, event organizers said.

    “They’ll have to be ready for a long foot journey of several hours, but this has always been a feature of World Youth Days,” said Anna Chmura, WYD’s communications coordinator.

    “There’ll be several designated routes, mostly from Krakow, and they’ll all be used heavily. But we’re confident the

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    Norwegian bishop: To avoid same-sex marriage, no more civil weddings

    WARSAW, Poland (CNS) – A Norwegian bishop said the country’s clergy will no longer officiate at civil weddings, after the predominant Lutheran Church’s governing synod voted to conduct gay marriages in Norway.

    Bishop Bernt Eidsvig of Oslo told Catholic News Service that he would have to seek permission from the Vatican, but added, “It’s clear we must distinguish our own church marriages from others.”

    “This is a matter of liturgy, so it doesn’t necessarily reflect broader change in our society’s

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    Christianity ‘running on fumes,’ U.S. bishop tells eucharistic congress

    CEBU, Philippines (CNS) – Los Angeles Auxiliary Bishop Robert Barron said popular culture’s message of individuals being “infinitely right” is “repugnant to (Catholics’) eucharistic faith.” But he also said Christianity is “running on fumes” as it tries to counter the trend of people leaving the church or staying away from the Eucharist.

    “To stretch out like someone dying of hunger is the right attitude toward the Eucharist,” Bishop Barron said at the 51st International Eucharistic Congress. “What’s sad today is so many in the Catholic world have

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    Pope to Cubans: Look to future with hope, but care for each other

    SANTIAGO, Cuba (CNS) – A key task of a traveling pope is to confirm his brothers and sisters in the faith. For Pope Francis in Cuba, that ministry took on added importance as Cuba and its people stand on the threshold of potentially epochal change.

    Many people inside and outside Cuba hope that normalized U.S.-Cuban relations will lead to greater communication, trade and exchanges between the two countries. They also hope those experiences will lead to more freedom and democracy on the Caribbean island.

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    Vatican Museums’ app gathers funds and art fans

    VATICAN CITY (CNS) – By downloading an app for a smartphone or tablet, members of the public can chat with others about famous works of art in the Vatican Museums, share strategies for dealing with the crowds and choose a work to help restore.

    “Patrum,” the new app from the Patrons of the Arts in the Vatican Museums, launched in mid-August. Part social network and part crowdsourcing, the app lets museum fans communicate with each other and make donations online.

    The app

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    Blessed Romero ‘another brilliant star’ belonging to church of Americas

    SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador (CNS) – Some thought this day would never arrive. Others hoped and some always knew it would.

    On May 23, the Catholic Church, beatified Archbishop Oscar Arnulfo Romero y Galdamez, of El Salvador, who was assassinated in 1980 while celebrating Mass, just a day after pleading and ordering soldiers to stop killing innocent civilians.

    “Blessed Romero is another brilliant star that belongs to the sanctity of the church of the Americas,” said Cardinal Angelo Amato, head

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    U.N. hosts exhibit of St. Francis’ manuscripts, artifacts from Assisi

    UNITED NATIONS (CNS) – Speakers at the Nov. 17 opening of an historic exhibit at the United Nations of medieval manuscripts and papal documents associated with St. Francis of Assisi affirmed the saint’s association with the world body’s peaceful aims and hoped his namesake pope would pay a visit next September.

    “Friar Francis: Traces, Words, Images” is a collection of 19 manuscripts and artifacts from the Sacred Convent of St. Francis of Assisi in Italy.

    The artifacts date from the

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    BLESSING

    Pope Francis blesses Stigmatine Sister Marije Kaleta during his pastoral visit to Tirana, Albania on Sept. 21. Sister Kaleta, 85, spoke about her work during Albania’s militant atheist regime. Photo by CNS

    Catholics in Libya said to be ‘trapped and helpless’ in latest chaos

    OXFORD, England (CNS) – Catholics in Libya have been left “afraid and unprotected,” local Catholic leaders said, after Islamist militants seized Tripoli and Benghazi, forcing the country’s elected parliament and government to flee.

    Franciscan Father Amado Baranquel, vicar of Tripoli’s Franciscan community, said most Christians were afraid to leave their homes because they feared being abducted.

    “There’s much lawlessness now, and we have no protection or security. Most Masses are having to be celebrated in private houses and apartments like

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    CELEBRATING MOTHER TERESA

    Girls dressed up as Blessed Mother Teresa during an Aug. 26 event to commemorate her 104th birth anniversary in a school in Bhopal, India. Mother Teresa was born Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu Aug. 26, 1910, to Albanian parents in Skopje, in present-day Macedonia. She died in 1997 and was beatified by Pope John Paul II in 2003. CNS photo

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    WAR CRIES

    Palestinians are seen Aug. 1 walking in the rubble of destroyed houses in Khan Younis, which was hit by Israeli shelling and airstrikes during an Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. The president of Caritas Internationalis suggested Israeli and Hamas leaders pick up a pair of binoculars so they could see that “most of your victims are innocent people.” CNS photo

    No electricity, water: Caritas official to launch appeal for Gaza

    JERUSALEM (CNS) – The head of Caritas in Jerusalem said he would launch an international appeal to help with the Gaza Strip and would not wait until the end of Israeli-Hamas hostilities, as he had done in the past.

    Father Raed Abusahlia, general director of Caritas Jerusalem, said July 18 that more than 80,000 Palestinians had been displaced and 1,250 homes have been completely demolished in Israeli airstrikes and the invasion of Gaza in July. He said 80 percent of the Gaza Strip was without electricity and

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    Rabbi says his friend, the pope, will face challenges in Holy Land

    ROME (CNS) – A rabbi who has known Pope Francis for almost 20 years and counts him as a close personal friend said the pope’s May trip to the Holy Land will be a challenging balancing act because of the high expectations of Israelis and Palestinians and of Christians, Jews and Muslims.

    “There are many themes, many conflicts that he will have to face and there are the expectations of many people,” said Rabbi Abraham Skorka, rector of Buenos Aires’ Latin American Rabbinical Seminary and co-author with

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    In Brazil, pope’s simple, artless actions resonate powerfully

    By Francis X. Rocca

    Catholic News Services

    RIO DE JANEIRO – If Blessed John Paul II had an actor’s mastery of the dramatic gesture and Pope Benedict XVI engaged the faithful most effectively through his learned and lucid writing, Pope Francis showed the world on his first international trip that his forte as a communicator is the simple, seemingly artless action that resonates powerfully in context.

    Twelve World Youth Day pilgrims stand with Pope Francis for grace before lunch at the archbishop’s residence in Rio de Janeiro

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    During flight, pope talks about importance of giving young people jobs

    ABOARD THE PAPAL FLIGHT TO BRAZIL (CNS) – With economic hard times as an excuse not to hire young people, the world risks tossing them aside and endangers its own future, Pope Francis said.

    Speaking to reporters aboard the papal flight to Rio de Janeiro July 22, the pope declined to answer their questions, but instead made very brief remarks about his July 22-29 trip and then greeted each of the 71 media members.

    A Mexican veteran of papal trips,

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    Pope says he returns to Latin America as witness of Christian love

    RIO DE JANEIRO (CNS) – Pope Francis returned to his native Latin America July 22, asking for open hearts, even after the irrepressible crowds made it clear he had them.

    –The 76-year-old pope’s first international trip involved a 12-hour flight from Rome, taking him back to the continent he left more than four months ago to attend the conclave that elected him pope.

    –After quick greetings at Rio’s international airport, then an often

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    Portuguese cardinal entrusts Pope Francis to Our Lady of Fatima

    FATIMA, Portugal (CNS) – Entrusting Pope Francis’ pontificate to Our Lady of Fatima, Cardinal Jose da Cruz Policarpo of Lisbon, Portugal, asked Mary to give the pope courage and strength, particularly as he moves to renew and reform the Catholic Church.

    “Give him the gift of discernment to know how to identify the ways of renewal of the church; give him the courage not to hesitate to follow the ways suggested by the Holy Spirit; support him i

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    Pope washes feet of 12 young detainees to serve them ‘from the heart’

    By Carol Glatz

    VATICAN CITY – Pope Francis told young inmates that, just as Jesus came to help and serve others, he, too, was at their service as a priest and bishop.

    Pope Francis kisses the foot of a prison inmate during the Holy Thursday Mass of the Lord’s Supper at Rome’s Casal del Marmo prison for minors March 28. Pope Francis washed the feet of 12 young people of different

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    Pope Francis’ remarks from balcony after his election

    Catholic News Service

    “Brothers and sisters, good evening. You know that the task of the conclave was to give Rome a bishop. It seems my brother cardinals went almost to the ends of the earth to find one.

    I thank you for your welcome.

    The diocesan community of Rome has its bishop. Thank you.

    First of all, I would like to offer a prayer for our bishop emeritus, Benedict XVI. Let us all pray together for him

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    Caritas leader: Pope’s letter gives bishop strong role in social action

    VATICAN CITY – Since its release Dec. 1, Pope Benedict XVI’s apostolic letter on the “service of charity” has provoked widespread speculation on how it might affect Catholic charitable agencies in their fund raising, hiring and selection of projects.

    Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga of Tegucigalpa, Honduras, arrives for a Mass celebrated by Pope Benedict XVI to mark the feast of Our Lady of

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    At youth celebration, pope tells Christians: Stay and make peace

    By Francis X. Rocca and Doreen Abi Raad

    BKERKE, Lebanon ­- Pope Benedict XVI urged young Christians in the Middle East not to flee violence and economic insecurity through emigration, but to draw strength from their faith and make peace in their troubled region.

    A rosary formed of balloons floats above the crowd gathered for a youth encounter with Pope Benedict XVI outside the patriarchal headquarters of the Maronite Catholic Church

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    Pope calls Middle Eastern Christians to suffering, service

    BEIRUT – Pope Benedict XVI acknowledged the suffering of Christians in the Middle East, reassuring them and urging them to promote peace through religiously inspired service to their societies.

    People cheer and wave Lebanese and Vatican flags during the outdoor Mass celebrated by Pope Benedict XVI on the Beirut waterfront Sept. 16. The pope was wrapping up his three-day visit to

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    Anderson says Vatican bank fired president to increase transparency

    VATICAN CITY — Carl A. Anderson, head of the U.S.-based Knights of Columbus and secretary of the Vatican bank’s board of supervisors, said a commitment to promoting transparency led the board to fire Ettore Gotti Tedeschi as bank president.

    The board unanimously passed a vote of “no confidence” in Gotti Tedeschi’s leadership May 24 during a meeting in

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    Patience, progress: Differing opinions on dealing with Cuba’s regime

    HAVANA – The Cuba that Pope Benedict XVI visited March 26-28 is a country where the Catholic Church enjoys significantly more freedom and official recognition than it did when Blessed John Paul II made the first papal visit to the island in 1998.

    Cuban political dissidents Alejandrina Garcia de la Rivas and Laura Maria Labrada Pollan pose for a photo in Havana

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    Response to bishops’ document gives glimpse of coming political season

    WASHINGTON It didn’t take long for the “spin” to start after the U.S. bishops reissued their 2007 document “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship” with a new introductory note signed by the president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and the chairmen of nine USCCB committees.

    The reissuance without changes to the body of the text “will not please some conservatives,” wrote John Gehring, senior writer and outreach

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    U.S. bishops’ agency denied federal grant to help trafficking victims

    WASHINGTON — Since 2006, the U.S. Catholic bishops’ Migration and Refugee Services has helped more than 2,700 victims of human trafficking obtain food, clothing and access to medical care.

    That service has come to a halt because the agency recently learned it did not receive a new grant award for this work from the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Refugee Resettlement. MRS’s

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    Pope tells young to build on their faith, share it with the world

    MADRID Pope Benedict XVI saw that 1.4 million young people could be buffeted by gusty winds and drenched by a driving rain and still fall silently to their knees to adore the Eucharist.

    Pope Benedict XVI arrives to celebrate the final Mass of World Youth Day at Cuatro Vientos airfield in Madrid Aug. 21. Photo by Paul Haring | CNS

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    WYD pilgrims’ task: Help pope revive faith in Spain

    VATICAN CITY Pope Benedict XVI will visit Spain in late August, celebrating the youthfulness and vigor of Catholic faith in a country where the Catholic majority often seems to have little or no impact on modern public life.

    The primary focus of the pope’s trip Aug. 18-21 will be on Catholic youths from around the globe participating in World Youth Day.

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