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The why of the pope’s liturgical broom

VATICAN (SE): A recent interview with Pope Francis by Father Antonio Spadaro, the editor-in-chief of Civiltà Cattolica, sheds more light on his decision to remove the entire complement of 27 members from the Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments.

The French publication, Crux, reported that in the interview, Pope Francis insists that the reform of the liturgy of the Mass that received impetus from the Second Vatican Council is here to stay.

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Fifty-nine million out of school

GENEVA (AsiaNews): About a third of all children in developing nations do not get the opportunity to go to school, because they must work. But what is more surprising, around the same number say their schools are not safe.

The results of a study carried out by the ChildFund Alliance on school absenteeism in 41 nations, found the highest out of school rate is in Afghanistan, where nine out of 10 children are not in the classrooms.

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Pope warns new cardinals against polarisation

VATICAN (SE): “The virus of polarisation and animosity permeates our way of thinking, feeling and acting,” Pope Francis said at a ceremony in St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome to elevate 16 bishops and one priest to membership in the College of Cardinals on November 19.

The pope described the polarisation he sees within the Church as being contrary to its richness and universality, which must be tangibly evident in the College of Cardinals.

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Roads to Eucharistic sharing

MALMO (SE): Sharing the Eucharist in an ecumenical setting is a stage of relations that across the board has not yet been achieved, as it is generally accepted that it is a sign of full reconciliation, a destination yet to be arrived at.

Kurt Cardinal Koch, the Swiss president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, told a media conference during the visit of Pope Francis to Sweden that what is important is to distinguish between Eucharistic hospitality and Eucharistic communion.

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Pope puts broom through liturgy congregation

VATICAN (CWN): Pope Francis has taken the broom to the entire Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments, the Vatican body in charge of all liturgical questions in the Church.

While it is routine for the pope to rotate a few members each year, on October 28, Pope Francis made the surprise announcement that he was replacing the complete complement of 27 people in the congregation, a total transformation of its makeup.

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Disagreement or disloyalty?

HONG KONG (SE): Human Rights Watch has waded into the discussion over the on-going negotiations between the Vatican and Beijing, cautioning the Vatican not to make any agreement before it sees convincing evidence of religious freedom across the Middle Kingdom.

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Mending historical fences

LUND (SE): Standing in the Lutheran cathedral in Lund, Sweden, Pope Francis said on October 31 that relations between the Lutheran and Catholic faiths has moved beyond the stage of resignation to division and that he regards his presence at the celebration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation as an opportunity to mend a critical moment of history.

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Around the traps

Archives on Argentine dictatorship to be opened

VATICAN (SE): The Vatican has completed the cataloguing and digitising of the archival material of the Bishops’ Conference of Argentina, the apostolic nunciature in Buenos Aires and the Vatican Secretariat of State in regard to the Argentine Military Dictatorship Period (1976 to 1983).

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The rosary is our daily history

VATICAN (SE): Pope Francis described the rosary as in many ways being a synthesis of the history of God’s mercy at a Mass celebrated on October 8, the vigil of the Marian Jubilee, a part of the observance of the Year of Mercy.

But he added that the repetitive prayer, far from removing us from the problems of life, demands that we immerse ourselves in the history of each day, so as to grasp the signs of Christ’s presence in our midst.

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Pope’s gift from China

ROME (SE): The gift from China that Pope Francis spoke of with journalists during his return flight to Rome from Baku in Azerbaijan on October 2 is a silk print drape inscribed with ideogrammes from the historical Christian Stele of Xi’an.

It depicts the long narrative inscribed on the famous stele, which is also referred to as the Nestorian Stele, which dates back to 781 during the Tang Dynasty, and documents the first 150 years of the presence of Nestorian Christians in the Middle Kingdom.

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