Pope Francis: Canon law 'an essential dimension' to ecumenism

VATICAN CITY -- The search for Christian unity must involve all aspects of the churches' lives, including their different church laws, Pope Francis said.

Amazon Synod getting varied reception among Catholics

VATICAN CITY -- Before members of the Synod of Bishops for the Amazon began packing their bags for the synod assembly at the Vatican Oct. 6-27, a variety of groups were announcing side events.

Vatican City court charges Italian priest with sexual abuse during seminary

VATICAN CITY (CNA) -- The Vatican announced Tuesday that the Vatican City State’s Promoter of Justice is indicting two Italian priests -- Fr. Gabriele Martinelli on charges of sexual abuse and Fr. Enrico Radice for “aiding and abetting.”

German 'synod' will proceed despite Vatican objections

MUNICH, Germany (CNA) -- The head of the German bishops’ conference told Vatican officials last week that addressing controversial theological topics during the German bishops’ proposed “binding synodal path” will be a service to the universal Church.

Pope Francis: Life without parole is no solution to crime

VATICAN CITY -- Sentencing someone to life in prison without the possibility of parole is "not the solution to problems, but a problem to solve," Pope Francis told Italian prison guards, prison chaplains and officials from the Ministry of Justice.

Papal commission for protection of minors meets in Rome

VATICAN CITY -- Members of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors meeting in Rome said there was a continued need to make safeguarding consistently part of the life of the church around the world.

Pope Francis urges Eastern Catholic bishops to promote ecumenism

VATICAN CITY -- Praising the fidelity of Eastern Catholics, Pope Francis also urged them to be more active in the search for Christian unity, especially unity with their Orthodox counterparts.

Prince Charles to attend Newman’s canonization in Rome

VATICAN CITY (CNA) -- Prince Charles will attend the canonization of Blessed Cardinal John Henry Newman next month.

Pope Francis to visit Thailand, Japan in November

VATICAN CITY -- Pope Francis will finally fulfill his desire to be a missionary to Japan when he visits the country, as well as Thailand, Nov. 20-26, the Vatican announced.

Pope Francis explains giving St. Peter's relics to Orthodox

VATICAN CITY -- Pope Francis said giving fragments of St. Peter's bones to the head of the church founded by Peter's brother, St. Andrew, was meant to be a reminder and encouragement of the journey toward Christian unity.

Cardinal Etchegaray a key papal envoy

VATICAN CITY -- Cardinal Roger Etchegaray, a longtime Vatican official and papal envoy who was sent to some of the world’s most wounded and challenging places, died in France Sept. 4. He was 96.