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Fight fake news and seek for truth pope tells journalists

VATICAN (CNS): “At a time when many spread fake news, humility keeps you from peddling food spoiled by disinformation and invites you to offer the good bread of truth. The humble journalist is a free journalist: free from pressures, free from biases,” Pope Francis told members of the Foreign Press Association in Italy during an audience at the Vatican on May 18. He added that that such freedom also required courage.
 

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Be wary of the temptation of functionalism

Robert Mickens, Rome
 
Most people who follow the happenings of the Catholic Church will vividly remember this date: 13 March 2013.
 
It was on that evening in Rome that a Jesuit cardinal from Argentina named Jorge Mario Bergoglio appeared on the central balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica dressed in white. He was the newly elected pope and had taken the name Francis.
 








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Pilgrimages to Medjugorje allowed but no ruling on apparitions

VATICAN (CNS): Polish Archbishop Henryk Hoser, the pope’s apostolic visitor to Medjugorje, and Archbishop Luigi Pezzuto, the nuncio to Bosnia-Herzegovina, announced on May 12 that Pope Francis has decided to allow official pilgrimages to Medjugorje, Bosnia-Herzegovina.
 

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New norms on mandatory abuse reporting and accountability

VATICAN (CNS): “The crimes of sexual abuse offend Our Lord, cause physical, psychological and spiritual damage to the victims and harm the community of the faithful,” Pope Francis said in a new document motu proprio (on the pope’s own initiative) with revised and clarified norms and procedures for holding bishops and religious superiors accountable in protecting minors as well as in protecting members of religious orders and seminarians from abuse.
 

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Women religious called to service not servitude pope says

VATICAN (CNS): “You did not become a religious in order to become the maid of a priest,” Pope Francis told some 850 superiors general of women’s religious orders from around the world taking part in the May 6 to 10 plenary of the International Union of Superiors General (UISG) in Rome. The union represents more than 450,000 sisters in more than 100 countries around the world. 
 

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Nations which stir up nationalism betray their mission, pope says

VATICAN (CNS): “The Church notes with concern the reemergence, a bit everywhere in the world, of aggressive currents against foreigners, especially immigrants, as well as that growing nationalism that overlooks the common good,” Pope Francis said on May 2 in a lengthy speech to members of the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences.
 
The academy held a plenary meeting from May 1 to 3 at the Vatican on the nature and role of the nation-state, the development of international cooperation and today’s resurgence of nationalism.

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Pope Francis and the Pharisees

Robert Mickens
 
Pope Francis has been known to make off-colour or politically incorrect jokes from time to time. For example, he has provoked sighs and raised eyebrows with stereotypical mother-in-law asides and occasional references to women as strawberries on the cake.
 
Then there’s his constant harping about modern-day Pharisees, as he frequently labels those Catholic priests and bishops who are being hypocrites.
 








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Catholics and Orthodox must work to heal divisions pope says

SOFIA (CNS): On the day the Bulgarian Orthodox celebrate St. Thomas Sunday and read the gospel about the apostle asking to touch the wounds of the risen Lord, Pope Francis said the divisions within Christianity are “painful lacerations on the body of Christ, which is the Church.”
 
Arriving on May 5 for his visit, the pope was welcomed by the prime minister, Boyko Borissov, before heading for a private meeting at presidential palace with the president, Rumen Rade.
 

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Ditch voracious shortsighted economic model pope urges

VATICAN (CNS): Pope Francis lambasted what he called “a fallacious” economic model” that exploits the earth’s resources while disregarding the rights and cultures of indigenous people has left the planet in a precarious condition and requires a change of heart that places the common good before financial gain
 

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Run to announce the living Word pope tells Bible congress

VATICAN (Agencies): “I wish you to be good bearers of the Word, with the same enthusiasm that we read these days in the Easter stories, where everyone runs. They run to meet and announce the living Word,” Pope Francis told around 160 participants at the International Congress of the Catholic Biblical Federation (CBF), which took place in Rome from April 23 to 26.
 

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