ROME - Getting into St. Peter’s Square for the canonization Mass of Sts. John XXIII and John Paul II was not for the faint of heart.

Published in Canada

VATICAN CITY - As Pope Francis prepares to address the new Vatican panel charged with tackling the clergy sexual abuse scandal, victims are demanding the Catholic Church take immediate action to expose perpetrators and punish the bishops who protected them.

Published in International

VATICAN CITY - Pope Francis and his council of eight cardinals are unlikely to complete a radical shakeup of the Holy See’s administration, or Curia, before 2015, the Vatican said Tuesday (April 29).

Published in Vatican

VATICAN CITY - Reports that Pope Francis told an Argentine woman civilly married to a divorced man that she can receive Communion "cannot be confirmed as reliable," said Jesuit Father Federico, the Vatican spokesman.

Published in Vatican

RIO DE JANEIRO - The cancellation of a scheduled Popemobile ride through a working-class neighborhood suggests that, despite official assurances, Pope Francis' chaotic entrance into the city July 22 may have raised concerns among those responsible for his safety during his first international trip as Pope.

Published in World Youth Day 2013

VATICAN CITY - The Vatican spokesman, Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, began a briefing about the election of the Pope Francis, a Jesuit, by apologizing that he was a bit in "shock."

Published in International

VATICAN CITY - The Sistine Chapel's transformation from a world-famous tourist site to the prayer-filled space where cardinal electors will choose the next pope is under way.

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VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- The College of Cardinals began their formal pre-conclave meetings March 4 with 142 members present, 103 of whom are under the age of 80 and eligible to enter the conclave to vote for a new pope.

Published in International

VATICAN CITY - When they are not in the Sistine Chapel, seated under Michelangelo's frescoes to vote for the next pope, the cardinal-electors will stay in a modern guesthouse that offers them both privacy and space to gather for relaxed conversation.

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Compromise has led to communists making 'slaves of the bishops'

TORONTO - At 81 years old, the bishop who once led hundreds of thousands through the streets of Hong Kong — defying Beijing, demanding democracy and an accountable government — is not holding his tongue.

Published in Features

VATICAN CITY - From the moment he was elected pope at the age of 78 in 2005, Pope Benedict XVI has kept a schedule that appeared light compared to that of Blessed John Paul II, but busy for a man who already had a pacemaker and who wanted to retire to study, write and pray when he turned 75.

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DUBLIN - The head of the Redemptorist fathers in Rome said he deeply regrets the actions of an Irish member of the order who accused the Vatican of subjecting him to "frightening procedures reminiscent of the Inquisition."

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VATICAN CITY - The Catholic Church has never encouraged anyone to use ivory for religious devotional objects and, in fact, teaches that animals must be treated with respect, the Vatican spokesman said in a letter to "friends of the elephants."

Published in International

Updated 01/10/13

VATICAN CITY - The Catholic Church remains committed to deepening its relations with Jews and finds it "absolutely unacceptable" to consider the Jewish people as enemies, the Vatican spokesman said.

Published in International

VATICAN CITY -- Vatican City State vendors, including the Vatican Museums and supermarket, stopped accepting credit- and debit-card payments Jan. 1, citing technical difficulties amid unofficial reports of regulatory concerns by Italian financial authorities.

Published in International