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Saint of the Poor continues to inspire

HONG KONG (SE): A large crowd gathered at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception on September 4 to hear Pope Francis proclaim Mother Teresa of Kolkata a tireless worker of mercy, describing her as an icon of God’s love, as he declared the woman who has become known as the Saint of the Poor a saint of the Catholic Church.

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Bishop writes to people in prison

HONG KONG (SE): “The majority of people in Hong Kong prisons eventually are offered the grace of walking through the holy door as an experience of joy after a long sorrow,” Bishop Joseph Ha Chi-shing told a gathering of people who work in the prison ministry held at the cathedral on August 28.

The auxiliary bishop of Hong Kong added that before they get the chance to walk through the big gate to freedom, they must accept the consequences of their crimes.

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Confession not black and white

KRAKOW (SE): There are a few football teams that wear black and white, but beyond that there is little in life that can be described as being anything other than shades of grey.

On July 30, Pope Francis told a group of Polish Jesuits during World Youth Day in Krakow, Poland, that the confessional is certainly one of those grey areas.

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Hollande meets pope

VATICAN (CNS): Pope Francis met privately at the Vatican with French president, Francois Hollande, who said he felt it necessary to thank the pope in person for his words after the slaying of a French priest and other terrorist attacks in France.

Hollande arrived in Rome on August 17 and went directly to the French national church, St. Louis, to visit a chapel which was set up as a place of prayer for the victims of terrorism.

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The pope’s paradigm

Two issues that Pope Francis has prioritised in his papacy are climate change and the sustainability of the global economy. In fact, he sees the two as being so intricately linked as to be inseparable. This is illustrated in his encyclical, Praise Be: On care for our common home (Laudato Si’).








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Pope talks forgiveness at Assisi

ASSISI (CWN): “The world needs forgiveness,” Pope Francis said during a visit to Assisi on August 4. “Too many people are caught up in resentment and harbour hatred, because they are incapable of forgiving.”

The pope made forgiveness the main theme of his remarks during a personal pilgrimage to mark the 800th anniversary of the Pardon of Assisi, the feast which commemorates the establishment of a plenary indulgence for all who pass through the chapel where the Franciscans were founded.

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Don’t identify Islam with terrorism

VATICAN (SE): “It is not right to identify Islam with violence. It is not right and it is not true,” Pope Francis told reporters during his return flight from World Youth Day in Poland on July 31.

The pope also stressed that he would not identify Islam with terrorism, because that would be unfair and not true.

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Beware paralysis of shame

KRAKÓW (SE): As over one million people pressed around the altar set up at Campus Misericordiae (Field of Mercy) for the closing Mass of World Youth Day on July 31, in stark contrast to the opening Mass on July 26 the sun shone its warmth on the grassy field and the heavens smiled on the cherished memories held in each heart.

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Blood on the sanctuary

Paris (SE): “The world is at war,” Pope Francis said on his flight from Rome to Krakow en route to World Youth Day after hearing of the death of Father Jaques Hamel as he was celebrating Mass in the village of Saint-Étienne-du-Rouvray, France, on July 26.

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Pope’s message to Youth Day

VATICAN (SE): In greeting the estimated two million delegates to the 31st World Youth Day as they were gathering in Poland, Pope Francis said he is praying that their trip may be safe and that the hopes and expectations that they bring with them will be fulfilled.

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