Correspondent, Rome, Italy
Catherine's Feed
Jun 29, 2011

Italy promotes vocational education to match youth with

ROME (Reuters) – Recruiters at Italian defense and aerospace firm Finmeccanica have jobs to offer but can’t find the right people, despite high youth unemployment in the euro zone’s third-largest economy.

Jobs come up in Italy in production, logistics, aircraft fitting and maintenance, but personnel manager Francesco Mantovani says the education system often fails to supply enough competent candidates.

Jun 27, 2011

New U.N. food chief sees high food prices for years

ROME (Reuters) – The newly elected chief of the United Nations food agency said on Monday he expected high food prices to last several years and cause problems for importing countries.

“High prices will remain not only a few years. This is not only a temporary imbalance,” Director-General Elect Jose Graziano da Silva told a news conference.

Jun 10, 2011

Italy recalls envoy to Brazil in extradition row

ROME (Reuters) – Italy recalled its ambassador to Brazil on Friday after the South American country refused to extradite a former left-wing guerrilla convicted of four murders.

The decision by Brazil’s supreme court earlier this week to uphold a government refusal to extradite Italian Cesare Battisti, allowing him to walk free, has brought relations between the two countries to a low point.

May 20, 2011
via FaithWorld

Rome’s Pope John Paul statue slammed by critics, including Vatican daily

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(A statue representing Pope John Paul II is unveiled outside Rome's Termini train station on May 18, 2011/Tony Gentile)

An unconventional new statue of the late Pope John Paul II, showing a giant hollowed out figure, has attracted harsh criticism from experts and the Vatican newspaper. The inauguration of the imposing bronze sculpture by Oliviero Rainaldi outside Rome’s central rail station was meant to round off celebrations to mark the beatification of John Paul, which moves him a major step closer to sainthood.

May 18, 2011

Up to 27 million trapped in slavery worldwide: U.S.

ROME (Reuters) – Up to 27 million people are modern-day slaves, and migrants fleeing violence in North Africa are among those most at risk of being exploited, a senior U.S. official said on Wednesday.

Countries where migrants arrive should try to identify potential victims and protect them, rather than opting for immediate repatriation which often sends them back into the hands of human traffickers, U.S. Ambassador-at-Large Luis CdeBaca said.

May 5, 2011
via FaithWorld

Vatican condemns Canadian ex-bishop over child porn

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(Bishop Raymond Lahey arrives at a police station in Ottawa October 1, 2009 to face child pornography charges/Chris Wattie )

The Vatican has condemned former Canadian Bishop Raymond Lahey after he pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography and said it planned to take disciplinary action against him.  Lahey, former Bishop of Antigonish in the eastern Canadian province of Nova Scotia, was charged with possession and importation of child pornography in 2009. He pleaded guilty on Wednesday and his sentence is due to be handed down later.

May 2, 2011

Pope John Paul beatified before massive crowd

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – The late Pope John Paul II was moved a major step closer to sainthood on Sunday at a ceremony that drew about a million and a half people to Rome and was celebrated by Catholics around the world.

“From now on Pope John Paul II shall be called ‘blessed’”, Pope Benedict proclaimed in Latin, bringing cheers to the largest crowd in Rome since John Paul’s funeral six years ago.

May 1, 2011
via FaithWorld

Pilgrims make long, arduous trips to fete John Paul

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(Pilgrims rest at St.Peter's Square in Rome April 30, 2011/Giampiero Sposito)

For Janusc Skibinski, there was only one place to be on the day the late Pope John Paul took the last step before sainthood. The Polish customs agent drove his family 29 hours from their hometown on the border with Belarus and queued with hundreds of thousands of people through the night so he could make it into St. Peter’s Square for the beatification of Poland’s most famous native son.

May 1, 2011

Pope John Paul officially beatified before huge crowd

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – The late Pope John Paul moved a major step closer to Roman Catholic sainthood on Sunday at a joyous ceremony that drew the largest crowd to Rome since his funeral six years ago.

“From now on Pope John Paul shall be called ‘blessed’”, Pope Benedict solemnly proclaimed in Latin, establishing that his predecessor’s feast day would be October 22, the day of the inauguration of John Paul’s history-making pontificate in 1978.

May 1, 2011

Huge crowds descend on Vatican for beatification

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Hundreds of thousands of people converged on St Peter’s Square in one of the biggest crowds ever seen at the Vatican on Sunday to participate in the beatification of Pope John Paul II.

Streams of people some 30 wide moved toward the Vatican area from all directions from before dawn to get a good spot for the Mass where Pope Benedict was to move his predecessor a step closer to sainthood.