Pope Francis names six women to Council for Economy

VATICAN CITY -- Renewing the membership of the Vatican Council for the Economy, Pope Francis named six women to the previously all-male board that oversees the financial operations of all Vatican offices and entities.

Vatican says baptisms that used a modified formula are not valid

VATICAN CITY -- Changing the words of the formula for baptism render the sacrament invalid, said the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

Benedict XVI 'extremely frail', says author

VATICAN CITY -- An author with a long and close relationship to retired Pope Benedict XVI told a German newspaper that the 93-year-old retired pope is "extremely frail."

China hacked computers of Vatican, other church entities

China has been accused of hacking Vatican computers as well as those in the Diocese of Hong Kong and other Catholic organizations in May.

Beatification of Father McGivney to take place Oct. 31

HARTFORD, Conn. -- Father Michael McGivney, the founder of the Knights of Columbus, will be beatified during a special Mass Oct. 31 at the Cathedral of St. Joseph in Hartford.

Justice, dignity not just 'privilege of the rich,' Vatican official says

VATICAN CITY -- Addressing the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, a Vatican representative said the protection of rights and human dignity is not exclusive to the wealthy but also to the most vulnerable, especially victims of human trafficking.

New priest says deep prayer helped him sort out life, led to his vocation

MEMPHIS, Tenn. -When Father Joseph Hastings, 33, was growing up, he had dreams like most young boys. He wanted to be a basketball player. He thought about being an actor.
He came from a devout Catholic family that spent family time together in adoration and distributing food at the Missionaries of Charity shelter in North Memphis.

Vatican foreign minister: Religious freedom must be protected

MANCHESTER, England -- The Catholic Church has failed to defend Christians effectively, partly because it historically accepted persecution as part of its "community story," a Vatican official said.

Vatican denies involvement in decision to exhume former Spanish dictator

VATICAN CITY -- The Vatican distanced itself again from any involvement in the Spanish government's decision to exhume the remains of the country's late dictator, Gen. Francisco Franco.

As Vatican-China agreement approaches two years, opinion still divided

VALLA BEACH, Australia -- China has announced that Bishop Paul Ma Cunguo of Shuozhou, a Vatican-recognized bishop, has joined the official state-run Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association.

Pope Francis makes surprise visit to summer camp

VATICAN CITY -- When Zoe, 10, showed up late for summer camp at the Vatican, she did not expect to see Pope Francis there.