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Mar 13, 2014

Insight – In Vatican shake-up, Pope redefines role of second-in-command

Vatican City (Reuters) – When he was elected a year ago, Pope Francis promised to shake up the bureaucracy of the world’s smallest country. He has started at the top – curbing the once-overarching role of the secretary of state.

The cardinal who oversees the Vatican’s relations with other countries has served as the top ranking official in the Holy See’s bureaucracy since the 17th century. And in recent decades the office accumulated increasing authority over finances and job hires, taking on roles analogous to prime minister and chief of staff in the papal court, as well as that of top diplomat.

Mar 13, 2014

In Vatican shake-up, Pope redefines role of second-in-command

Vatican City (Reuters) – When he was elected a year ago, Pope Francis promised to shake up the bureaucracy of the world’s smallest country. He has started at the top – curbing the once-overarching role of the secretary of state.

The cardinal who oversees the Vatican’s relations with other countries has served as the top ranking official in the Holy See’s bureaucracy since the 17th century. And in recent decades the office accumulated increasing authority over finances and job hires, taking on roles analogous to prime minister and chief of staff in the papal court, as well as that of top diplomat.

Mar 6, 2014
via FaithWorld

Pope Francis confesses to pilfering a cross from a dead priest

Photo

(Pope Francis at the Vatican June 17, 2013. REUTERS/Stefano Rellandini )

Pope Francis revealed on Thursday he had succumbed to “that thief in all of us” and broke the seventh commandment by stealing a small cross from the coffin of a priest so he could remember the man.

In off-the-cuff comments to Roman priests (here in English and in Italian), Francis recalled when he was in his native Buenos Aires, he went to the funeral of an elderly priest he admired.

Mar 5, 2014
via FaithWorld

Italian publisher launches Pope fan magazine, including centerfold pictures

Photo

(Pope Francis waves as he arrives to lead the general audience in Saint Peter’s Square at the Vatican March 5, 2014. REUTERS/Alessandro Bianchi )

An Italian publisher on Wednesday launched a fan magazine devoted exclusively to Pope Francis – including a centerfold – just as the pope said he did not want to be seen as a superstar.

Mar 5, 2014
via FaithWorld

I’m not a superman, Pope Francis says in new interview

Photo

(Pope Francis waves as he arrives to lead the general audience in Saint Peter’s Square at the Vatican March 5, 2014. REUTERS/Alessandro Bianchi )

Pope Francis has played down the notion that he is a “superman” who will bring sweeping reforms to the Roman Catholic Church, stressing that its ban on contraception and opposition to gay marriage will remain in place.

Mar 5, 2014

Don’t be obsessed by possessions, Pope says in starting Lent

ROME (Reuters) – Pope Francis, leading the world’s Roman Catholics into the penitential season of Lent on Ash Wednesday, urged them not to be obsessed with possessions and to shun a culture where everything can be bought and sold.

Ash Wednesday is the day Christians are reminded of mortality and hear the phrase ‘from dust you came and to dust you shall return’ as ashes are smudged onto their foreheads.

Mar 5, 2014

I’m not a superman, Pope Francis says

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Pope Francis has played down the notion that he is a “superman” who will bring sweeping reforms to the Roman Catholic church, stressing that its ban on contraception and opposition to gay marriage will remain in place.

The pope, in an interview with Italy’s Corriere della Sera newspaper published on Wednesday, also said no institution had moved with more “transparency and responsibility” than the Church to protect children in the wake of its sexual abuse scandals.

Feb 28, 2014

Pope skips seminary visit because of slight fever -Vatican

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Pope Francis skipped a planned visit to student priests at a Rome seminary on Friday evening because he was suffering from a slight fever and was advised to rest, the Vatican said.

It was the first time since his election nearly a year ago that the 77-year-old pope had cancelled a public engagement and came after a very busy period for the pontiff, with a number of events outdoors in cold weather.

Feb 26, 2014

Ex pope Benedict denies he was forced to resign

VATICAN CITY, Feb 26 (Reuters) – Former Pope Benedict, in
one of the few times he has broken his silence since stepping
down nearly a year ago, has branded as “absurd” fresh media
speculation that he was forced to quit.

Church law says a pope’s resignation is valid only if he
takes the decision in full freedom and without pressure from
others.

Feb 24, 2014

Pope revolutionises Vatican by opening finances to scrutiny

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Pope Francis on Monday revolutionised the Vatican’s scandal-plagued finances, inviting outside experts into a world often seen as murky and secretive and saying the church must use its wealth to help the poor.

Francis, elected nearly a year ago with a mandate for reform, used a document known as a Motu Proprio – Latin for “by his own initiative” – to implement immediate changes including appointing an auditor-general.