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Mar 18, 2013

Papal inaugural Mass will straddle religion and politics

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – The Vatican was preparing for a huge crowd for Pope Francis’s inaugural Mass on Tuesday, an event straddling religion and politics that will bring together European royalty, heads of state and world spiritual leaders.

Hundreds of thousands of people are expected to cram St. Peter’s Square and surrounding streets for the Mass to formally install Francis as the new leader of the world’s 1.2 billion Roman Catholics.

Mar 17, 2013

At Mass in Vatican parish, Pope Francis says don’t condemn others

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Pope Francis took on the role of a simple parish priest on Sunday, saying Mass for the Vatican’s resident community and urging listeners to not to be so quick to condemn others for their failings.

Francis, the former Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, said Mass for a few hundred people in Santa Anna, a church just inside the Vatican walls that is used as the parish church for workers in the city-state.

Mar 16, 2013

Pope Francis wants Church to be poor, and for the poor

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Pope Francis, giving his clearest indication yet that he wants a more austere Catholic Church, said on Saturday that it should be poor and remember that its mission is to serve the poor.

Francis, speaking mostly off-the-cuff and smiling often, made his comments in an audience for journalists where he explained why he chose to take the name Francis, after St. Francis of Assisi, a symbol of peace, austerity and poverty.

Mar 15, 2013
via FaithWorld

Vatican denies Pope Francis stayed silent during Argentine dictatorship

Photo

(Newly elected Pope Francis I, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina, checks out of the church-run residence where he had been staying in Rome before his election. March 14, 2013,  REUTERS/Osservatore Romano)

The Vatican on Friday strongly denied accusations by some critics in Argentina that Pope Francis stayed silent during systematic human rights abuses by the former military dictatorship.

Mar 15, 2013

New pope urges Church to return to its Gospel roots

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – In his first public Mass, Pope Francis urged the Catholic Church on Thursday to stick to its Gospel roots and shun modern temptations, warning that it would become just another charitable group if it forgot its true mission.

In a heartfelt, simple homily, the Argentinian pope laid out a clear moral path for the 1.2-billion-member Church, which is beset by scandals, intrigue and strife.

Mar 14, 2013
via FaithWorld

By-the-book Vatican braces for an unscripted papacy

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(Newly elected Pope Francis I (2nd R) walks in the 5th-century Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore during a private visit in Rome March 14, 2013. REUTERS/Osservatore Romano)

The Vatican, an age-old institution used to having almost everything done by the book, is bracing for the unscripted papacy.

Mar 14, 2013

New pope slips out of Vatican for morning prayer visit

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Pope Francis, barely 12 hours after his election, quietly left the Vatican early on Thursday to pray for guidance at a Rome basilica as he looks to usher a Catholic Church mired in intrigue and scandal into a new age of simplicity and humility.

Francis went to the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore, the oldest church in the world dedicated to the Madonna, where he prayed before a famous icon of the Madonna called the Salus Populi Romani, or Protectress of the Roman People.

Mar 14, 2013

New pope promises to bring new look to Church

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Argentine Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio’s election as pope has broken Europe’s centuries-old grip on the papacy, opening the doors on a new age of simplicity and humility for the Roman Catholic Church, mired in intrigue and scandal.

He is the first South American pontiff, the first non-European pope in 1,300 years and the first to take the name Pope Francis, in honor of St. Francis of Assisi, the 12th century saint who spurned wealth to pursue a life of poverty.

Mar 14, 2013

New York cardinal offers glimpse of new pope’s style

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Shortly after his election on Wednesday night, Pope Francis shunned the papal limousine and rode on the last shuttle bus with other cardinals to go back to a residence inside the Vatican for a meal.

That showed his humble side, according to New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan, who gave an insider’s look into the hours immediately after Jorge Bergoglio of Argentina was elected.

Mar 14, 2013

Argentina’s Bergoglio elected as new Pope Francis

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina was elected in a surprise choice to be the new leader of the troubled Roman Catholic Church on Wednesday, taking the name Francis I and becoming the first non-European pontiff in nearly 1,300 years.

Pope Francis, 76, appeared on the central balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica just over an hour after white smoke poured from a chimney on the roof of the Sistine Chapel to signal 115 cardinal electors had chosen him to lead the world’s 1.2 billion Roman Catholics.