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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

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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

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Pope Proclaims “Dispenser of Mercy” Mother Teresa a Saint

By Isla Binnie VATICAN CITY, Sept 4 – Mother Teresa of Calcutta, known as the “saint of the gutters” during her life, was declared a saint of the Roman Catholic Church by Pope Francis on Sunday, fast-tracked to canonisation just 19 years after her death. Tens of thousands of pilgrims packed St. Peter’s Square at

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After Decades of Mistrust, Pope Pushes for Breakthrough With China

By Lisa Jucca, Benjamin Kang Lim and Greg Torode HONG KONG/BEIJING, July 14 – Pope Francis is leading a determined push to fundamentally alter the relationship between the Vatican and China, which for decades has been infused with mutual suspicion and acrimony. Interviews with some two dozen Catholic officials and clergy in Hong Kong, Italy

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Vatican Promotes American as Pope’s Spokesman

ROME, July 11 – The Vatican named former Fox News reporter Greg Burke as its new spokesman on Monday, the first time a U.S. citizen has been entrusted with leading the pope’s communications team. Burke, who is a member of the conservative Catholic group Opus Dei, was hired by the Vatican an adviser four years

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Indian Priest Kidnapped in Deadly Yemen Attack; Pope Condemns World Apathy

ADEN/VATICAN CITY, March 6 – Gunmen who killed at least 15 people in an old people’s home in Yemen last week also kidnapped an Indian priest, officials said on Sunday, as Pope Francis condemned the attack and the “indifference” of the world’s reaction to it. No one has claimed responsibility for Friday’s incident in which

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Pope Ends Africa Tour With Mosque Visit

By Joe Bavier and Philip Pullella BANGUI, Nov 30 (Reuters) – Pope Francis ventured into one of the world’s most dangerous neighbourhoods on Monday to beg Christians and Muslims to end a spiral of hate, vendetta and bloodshed that has killed thousands over the past three years. Under intense security, Francis passed through a no-man’s

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