Pope, cardinal council begin work on reorganizing Roman Curia

VATICAN CITY - Pope Francis and the eight members of his international Council of Cardinals have begun their discussions on specific ways to reorganize the Roman Curia, looking first at the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments, the Vatican spokesman said.

People must learn to dialogue, respect other religions, pope says

VATICAN CITY - In societies increasingly made up of people of different cultures and religions, people must learn the art of dialogue and reach out to others with respect and friendship, Pope Francis said.

Best gift in life is encountering Christ, Pope says at start of Advent

VATICAN CITY - The best present in life is encountering Jesus -- an encounter that will last a lifetime, Pope Francis said.

Meeting superiors, Pope says 2015 will be dedicated to religious life

VATICAN CITY - During a three-hour meeting with 120 superiors general of men's religious orders, Pope Francis said the church would make consecrated life its focus in 2015.

Christmas around the world

KINGSTON, ONT. - There’s a lesson to be learned in the basement of St. Paul the Apostle parish, where artist Tony Vella has assembled a collection that teaches the story of God made human, shown through the lens of cultures from around the world.

Catholic Church must be of the poor, for the poor

The synopsis below has been prepared by the Holy See Press Office and Fr. Thomas Rosica, CSB, who has served as an English language corresponding assistant to Fr. Federico Lombardi, S.J., since the papal transition.

Pope lays out his vision for an evangelical Church

VATICAN CITY - In his first extensive piece of writing as Pope, Pope Francis lays out a vision of the Catholic Church dedicated to evangelization in a positive key, with a focus on society's poorest and most vulnerable, including the aged and unborn.

Vatican officials say pope's document provides map for church's future

VATICAN CITY - Pope Francis' apostolic exhortation on sharing the joy of the Gospel is a call to faith-filled optimism, recognizing challenges but knowing that God's love and lordship will prevail, said Archbishop Rino Fisichella, introducing the text to the media.

Pope: Opposition to abortion isn't 'conservative,' it's result of faith

VATICAN CITY - Defending human dignity and protecting society's most vulnerable necessarily means protecting the unborn and defending their right to life, Pope Francis said in his apostolic exhortation.

Pope says only men can be priests, but women must have voice in church

VATICAN CITY - The Catholic Church is not going to change its position on the inadmissibility of women priests, Pope Francis said, but it does have to stop linking all decision making to ordination and allow women to have a voice in deliberations.

Pope frames vision for Church outreach at every level

VATICAN CITY - Here are a few of the main features of Pope Francis' apostolic exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium (The Joy of the Gospel), which was released Nov. 26 at the Vatican: