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New statutes for Vatican bank

VATICAN (CNS): Pope Francis approved new statutes for the Institute for the Works of Religion (IOR)— the Vatican bank—that include structural changes and a mandatory external audit.
 
The renewed statutes, which were approved by the pope ad experimentum (on a trial basis) for two years, were published by the Vatican press office on August 10.
 

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Pope encourages priests dejected by abuse crisis

VATICAN CITY (CNS): Pope Francis acknowledged the shame and frustration felt by priests who are discouraged by the actions of fellow clergy members who betrayed the trust of their flock through sexual abuse and abuse of conscience and power.
 
In a letter addressed to priests around the world on August 4, the pope said that many priests have spoken or written to him expressing “their outrage at what happened” and the doubts and fears the sexual abuse crisis has caused.
 

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Pope calls for quick action to prevent further migrant deaths

VATICAN (CNS): “I have learned with sorrow the news of the dramatic shipwreck that happened in recent days in the Mediterranean waters where dozens of migrants including women and children have lost their lives,” Pope Francis said after praying the Angelus with visitors in St. Peter’s Square on July 28.
 
“I renew my heartfelt appeal that the international community act quickly and decisively to avoid that such tragedies are repeated and to guarantee the safety and dignity of everyone,” he.
 

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Cardinal Ortega the voice of Cuba’s poor dies at 82

VATICAN (CNS): Jaime Cardinal Ortega Alamino, the retired archbishop of Havana, Cuba, was a proud Cuban who pressed for greater freedom for his Church and for an end to the United States (US) embargo on his homeland. He died on July 26 after a long battle with cancer, at the age of 82.
 

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New Vatican press office director

VATICAN (CNS): Pope Francis appointed Matteo Bruni director of the Holy See Press Office, it was announced on July 18. He takes over from Alessandro Gisotti who has been the interim director since December 31.
 
The 42-year-old Bruni has worked as assistant to the director since 2013, helping to organize and coordinate media presence and pools on papal trips.
 

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Curia reform: Changing attitudes and structures

VATICAN (CNS): Pope Francis’ plan for the reform of the Roman Curia will change the names of several offices and merge a few of them, but the biggest change it hopes to spark is one of attitude.
 
The last major reorganisation of the Curia came with Pope St. John Paul II’s apostolic constitution, Pastor Bonus (The Good Shepherd) in 1988, which—in its very first sentence—spoke of Jesus entrusting the apostles with “the mission of making disciples in all nations and of preaching the gospel to every creature.”

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Pope mourns death of patient after doctors withhold care

VATICAN (CNS): “Every life is valuable, always,” Pope Francis tweeted after offering prayers for Vincent Lambert, a 42-year-old Frenchman who died on July 11, nine days after doctors stopped providing him with nutrition and hydration.
 
“May God the Father welcome Vincent Lambert in his arms,” the pope’s tweet said. “Let us not build a civilisation that discards persons whose lives we no longer consider to be worthy of living.”
 

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Women named full members of congregation for religious

VATICAN (CNS): Pope Francis named six superiors of women’s religious orders, a consecrated laywoman and the superior of the De La Salle Christian Brothers as full members of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life the Vatican announced on July 8. Previously, members had all been men.
 

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Migrants are not just a social issue pope says

VATICAN (CNS): Christians are called to follow the spirit of the beatitudes by comforting the poor and the oppressed, especially migrants and refugees who are rejected, exploited and left to die, Pope Francis said during a Mass commemorating the sixth anniversary of his visit to the southern Mediterranean island of Lampedusa on July 8.
 

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German church needs spiritual renewal as well pope says

VATICAN (CNS): In late September 2018, the German Bishops’ Conference released a study that revealed an estimated 3,700 cases of sexual abuse were reported in Germany from 1946 to 2014. The statistics prompted outrage in the general public and the German bishops held several meetings to discuss reforms; some of the suggestions included reviewing the Church’s discipline on priestly celibacy, reviewing Church law, promoting more women in Church administration and reviewing Catholic teaching on sexual morality.
 

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