Pope Francis will take rabbi and Muslim leader with him to Holy Land

VATICAN CITY - Pope Francis will be accompanied on his first visit to the Middle East by Argentine Rabbi Abraham Skorka and Muslim leader Omar Abboud — two friends from Buenos Aires.

    Vatican official voices opposition to automated weapons systems

    VATICAN CITY - No matter how sophisticated and how many algorithms are programmed to help a drone or other machine make calculations before firing on a target, autonomous weapons systems could never comply with international human rights law, a Vatican official said.

      Pope Paul VI to be beatified this fall

      VATICAN CITY - After weeks of speculation, Pope Francis made it official on May 10 that Pope Paul VI could become the latest pope poised to become a saint after a miracle was accredited to Paul’s intercession.

        Nuns say they will continue dialogue despite Vatican criticisms

        The American nuns who were publicly scolded by the Vatican’s top doctrinal official for disobedience and promoting unorthodox beliefs have rejected the criticisms, and say their “attempts to clarify misperceptions have led to deeper misunderstandings” between Rome and the organization representing most of the 50,000 sisters in the U.S.

          Vatican calls for release of kidnapped Nigerian girls

          VATICAN CITY - The Vatican issued an urgent appeal today for the release of more than 200 Nigerian schoolgirls kidnapped by the Islamist militant group Boko Haram.

            'Pope’s theologian’ downplays Vatican blast at U.S. nuns

            NEW YORK - The German cardinal who has been called the “Pope’s theologian” said fresh Vatican criticism of American nuns was typical of the “narrower” view that officials of the Roman Curia tend to take, and he said U.S. Catholics shouldn’t be overly concerned.

              Vatican defends record on sexual abuse to UN panel

              VATICAN CITY - The Vatican has effectively addressed the “worldwide scourge” of clerical sexual abuse over the past decade and promoted the reporting of allegations to both Church and legal authorities, a United Nations panel heard.

                Vatican’s doctrine chief blasts U.S. nuns for disobedience

                Catholic nuns in the United States have been thumbing their nose at Rome’s demands to toe the doctrinal line and they need to obey or face serious consequences, the Vatican’s enforcer of orthodoxy said in a surprisingly tough talk to women representing most American sisters.

                  Vatican official says church making progress in stopping sexual abuse

                  VATICAN CITY - Appearing before a U.N. committee monitoring adherence to an international treaty designed to fight torture, a Vatican official insisted that, over the past 10 years, the Catholic Church has "in a systematic, constructive and effective way," worked to prevent clerical sexual abuse of minors and assist victims.

                    Vatican statistics report Church growth remains steady worldwide

                    VATICAN CITY - The number of Catholics in the world and the number of priests, permanent deacons and religious men all increased in 2012, while the number of women in religious orders continued to decline, according to Vatican statistics.

                      Hopes rise that Pope, patriarch meeting renews Christian unity effort

                      ROME - The Orthodox bishop who is co-ordinating the upcoming pilgrimage to Jerusalem by Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople said he hopes the patriarch's May 25 meeting with Pope Francis will give new impetus to efforts for Christian unity.