catholic church

Pope Says He Believes Ban on Female Priests is Forever

By Philip Pullella ABOARD THE PAPAL PLANE, Nov. 2 – Pope Francis said on Tuesday he believes the Roman Catholic Church’s ban on women becoming priests is forever and will never be changed, in some of his most definitive remarks on the issue. He was speaking aboard a plane taking him back to Rome from

[ Read More ]

Pope Heads to Sweden to Commemorate Martin Luther

By Philip Pullella VATICAN CITY, Oct 31 – Pope Francis goes to Sweden on Monday to help start commemorations of the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther’s Reformation, a trip that has won him praise from Lutherans but criticism from Catholic conservatives. Martin Luther, a German, started the Reformation in 1517 when he wrote 95 theses

[ Read More ]

Pope Says Gender Theory Part of “Global War” on Marriage, Family

TBILISI, Oct 2 – Pope Francis warned on Saturday of a “global war” against traditional marriage and the family, saying both were under attack from gender theory and divorce. Francis made his comments in an impromptu response to a question at a meeting of the small Catholic community in the ex-Soviet republic of Georgia. “You

[ Read More ]

“Download a Good Heart”, Pope Tells Young as Polish Visit Ends

By Philip Pullella KRAKOW, Poland, July 31 – Pope Francis wrapped up his Polish visit on Sunday with a huge outdoor Mass where he told young people to look beyond the instant gratification afforded by technology, and instead to try to change the world. Hundreds of thousands of young people, many of whom camped out

[ Read More ]

Pope Returns With 12 Refugees After Visit to Greek Island

By Philip Pullella and Karolina Tagaris LESVOS, Greece April 16 – Pope Francis took three families of Syrian refugees back to Rome on Saturday after visiting the frontline of Europe’s migrant crisis at a camp in Greece where migrants wept at his feet, kissed his hand and begged for help. At a sprawling fenced complex

[ Read More ]

Pope Francis to Visit Greek Migrant Island of Lesvos on April 16

VATICAN CITY, April 7 – Pope Francis will make a lightning trip to the Greek island of Lesvos on April 16, the Vatican said on Thursday, in a visit aimed at supporting refugees and drawing attention to the front line of Europe’s migrant crisis. Hundreds of thousands of refugees, many fleeing the war in Syria,

[ Read More ]

Use “Weapons of Love” to Fight Evil of Terrorism, Pope Says on Easter

By Philip Pullella VATICAN CITY, March 27 – Pope Francis urged the world in his Easter message on Sunday to use the “weapons of love” to combat the evil of “blind and brutal violence”, following the attacks in Brussels. After a week of sombre religious events commemorating Jesus’ death, Francis said an Easter Sunday Mass

[ Read More ]

Australian Abuse Victims Contest Vatican on Lack of Pope Meeting

By Philip Pullella and Peter Gosnell ROME/SYDNEY, March 5 – Australian victims of sexual abuse by Catholic priests said on Friday they were disappointed they were not granted a meeting with Pope Francis and contested the Vatican’s assertion they failed to make their request through the proper channels. The group of about 15 were in

[ Read More ]

“Evil Was Done”, Cardinal Says After Meeting Abuse Survivors

By Philip Pullella and Jane Wardell ROME/SYDNEY, March 4 – Cardinal George Pell, under fire for his handling of sexual abuse of children by priests in Australia, on Thursday acknowledged “the evil that was done” and vowed to work with survivors to enact better protection measures. Pell, who gave four days of evidence via video

[ Read More ]

Top Vatican Cardinal Says Senior Clergy Lied About Child Sexual Abuse

By Philip Pullella and Jane Wardell ROME/SYDNEY, March 1 – Australian Cardinal George Pell, the highest-ranking Vatican official to testify on systemic sexual abuse of children by clergy in the Roman Catholic Church, on Monday said senior clergy lied to him to cover up abuse in the 1970s. The Vatican’s treasurer told Australia’s Royal Commission

[ Read More ]