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Nov 10, 2014
via FaithWorld

Vatican to rein in sales of papal blessings, vendors cry foul

Photo

(A calligrapher makes a papal blessing on parchment at a workshop in Rome November 7, 2014. REUTERS/Stefano Rellandini)

Rino Pensa has been making personalised papal blessings on parchments for 65 years, a mainstay of his small business creating intricately lettered scrolls marking milestones like baptisms and marriages.

Nov 10, 2014

Vatican to rein in sales of papal blessings, vendors cry foul

ROME, Nov 10 (Reuters) – Rino Pensa has been making
personalised papal blessings on parchments for 65 years, a
mainstay of his small business creating intricately lettered
scrolls marking milestones like baptisms and marriages.

The Vatican has decided that as of Jan. 1 his workshop and
about 60 other producers and stores that have been in the papal
blessing business for decades will no longer be allowed to make
or sell them, a decision vendors say could cost up to 500 jobs.

Nov 9, 2014

Italy president may resign early in coming months: commentators

ROME (Reuters) – Italy’s president Giorgio Napolitano, who reluctantly agreed to a second term in 2013 at a time of political crisis, may step down in January, five years before the end of his term, political commentators said on Sunday.

Napolitano, 89, could announce his decision in his traditional year-end address on Dec. 31 and leave office several weeks later, commentators in major newspapers said.

Nov 8, 2014

Pope demotes outspoken American conservative cardinal

VATICAN CITY, Nov 8 (Reuters) – Pope Francis on Saturday
demoted an outspoken conservative American cardinal who has been
highly critical of the pontiff’s reformist leadership of the
Roman Catholic Church.

Cardinal Raymond Burke, 66, was removed as head of the
Vatican’s highest court and appointed to the ceremonial post of
chaplain of the charity group Knights of Malta.

Nov 6, 2014

Vatican issues staff with financial ethics guidebook

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – The Vatican has issued staff with a manual on economic ethics and accountability, as part of Pope Francis’ effort to clean up the Holy See’s finances after a rash of scandals.

The 45-page Financial Management Policies was sent to all Vatican departments this week by the Secretariat for the Economy, a special unit set up earlier this year, according to an internal cover letter seen by Reuters.

Oct 29, 2014

Vatican unveils new air, light systems to protect Michelangelo frescoes

VATICAN CITY, Oct 29 (Reuters) – The Vatican on Wednesday
unveiled new high-tech, energy-saving lighting and air
purification systems to protect Michelangelo’s delicate Sistine
Chapel frescoes from damage caused by ever-growing crowds of
tourists.

Dust brought in from outside, body sweat and carbon dioxide
pose a major risk to the masterpieces, which are more than 500
years old. They include one of the most famous scenes in the
history of art – the arm of a gentle bearded God reaching out to
give life to Adam.

Oct 20, 2014
via FaithWorld

Catholic Church should not fear change, Pope Francis says at synod close

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(Pope Francis greets cardinals at the end of a mass for the beatification of former pope Paul VI in St. Peter’s square at the Vatican October 19, 2014. REUTERS/Tony Gentile)

Pope Francis has closed an assembly of Catholic bishops that revealed deep divisions on how to respond to homosexuality and divorce, saying on Sunday the Church should not be afraid of change and new challenges.

Oct 19, 2014

Church should not fear change, pope says at synod close

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Pope Francis on Sunday closed an assembly of Catholic bishops that revealed deep divisions on how to reach out to homosexuals and divorced people, saying the Church should not be afraid of change and new challenges.

Francis, who has said he wants a more merciful and less rigid Church, made his comments in a sermon to some 70,000 people in St. Peter’s Square for the ceremonial closing of a two-week assembly, known as a synod.

Oct 18, 2014

Vatican document on family revises language on gays

VATICAN CITY, Oct 18 (Reuters) – The final version of a
controversial Vatican document issued on Saturday radically
revised its earlier wording on homosexuals, eliminating language
that had talked more positively of them than ever before in
church history.

The document, called a “relatio”, was issued at the
conclusion of a two-week assembly, or synod, of some 200 Roman
Catholic bishops from around the world.

Oct 17, 2014
via FaithWorld

Vatican to limit Sistine Chapel visitors to protect fragile frescoes

Photo

(The Sistine Chapel, as former Pope Benedict XVI met with artists on November 21, 2009. Picture taken with fish-eye lens. REUTERS/Osservatore Romano)

The Vatican will restrict the number of visitors to the Sistine Chapel to 6 million a year to protect Michelangelo’s delicate frescoes from damage caused by ever-growing crowds of tourists, an official said on Thursday.