VATICAN CITY - Though exactly what happened to Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17 remained unclear, Pope Francis offered prayers for the 298 passengers and crew members who died when it came down in eastern Ukraine.

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Updated 07/22/14

VATICAN CITY - As the last Iraqi Christians in Mosul fled the city, Pope Francis urgently called for prayers, dialogue and peace.

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VATICAN CITY - Although Pope Francis planned to make a short, private visit to Caserta in southern Italy specifically to visit a Pentecostal pastor he knows from Argentina, the 200-km trip has taken a new form — two forms, to be exact.

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VATICAN CITY - Pope Francis today waded into the controversy of the wave of unaccompanied minors arriving at the U.S.-Mexico border, calling for an end to racism against migrants and pushing the United States to offer greater protection for young children entering the country illegally.

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VATICAN CITY - Pope Francis has provoked a debate within the Catholic Church after being quoted as saying that one in 50 Catholic clerics is a pedophile.

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VATICAN CITY - The Vatican said the latest published interview with Pope Francis, in which he says fighting sex abuse and the mafia will be priorities of his pontificate, should not be considered a record of his exact words.

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VATICAN CITY - Praying for peace is never a useless exercise — it keeps evil at bay and helps people not give in to violence, Pope Francis said.

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VATICAN CITY - More than a meeting and homily, Pope Francis laid out a clear road map for the Church when he celebrated Mass and welcomed abuse survivors to the Vatican.

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OTTAWA - Pope Francis has taken the first steps towards forging unprecedented bonds with evangelical and charismatic Protestant groups, CCN has learned.

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DUBLIN - One of the Irish survivors of clerical sexual abuse who met Pope Francis July 7 described the encounter as a "huge vindication" for her.

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VATICAN CITY - The tragic deaths of thousands of men, women and children who die while searching for a better future should trigger compassion and action, not indifference, Pope Francis said.

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VATICAN CITY - Asking for forgiveness, Pope Francis told abuse survivors that "despicable actions" caused by clergy have been hidden for too long and had been "camouflaged with a complicity that cannot be explained."

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VATICAN CITY - Sympathizing with all the unknowns facing young people today, Pope Francis -- half joking -- said it is easier for a pope because he knows where his earthly life will end.

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VATICAN CITY - Landmines wound innocent civilians, "prolong war and nurture fear" long after conflicts have ended, Pope Francis told delegates working on the full implementation of an international treaty banning the production and use of anti-personnel mines.

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VATICAN CITY - Pope Francis telephoned Rome's chief rabbi to personally express his sadness over the murder of three kidnapped Israeli teens whose bodies were found June 30 in Hebron, West Bank.

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