PALERMO, Sicily – Honouring a priest shot at point-blank range by the Mafia, Pope Francis insisted that true happiness and a real change in Sicilian society will come only when people love and care for one another rather than trying to grab as much money and power as they can.
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WASHINGTON – Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of Bishop Michael J. Bransfield of Wheeling-Charleston, West Virginia, and has instructed Archbishop William E. Lori of Baltimore to conduct an investigation into allegations that Bishop Bransfield sexually harassed adults.
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VATICAN – Updating the norms and regulations governing the resignation of bishops and of Roman Curia department heads who are not cardinals, Pope Francis said they will continue to hold office until he accepts their resignations.
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VATICAN CITY – The first person to serve as the Vatican's independent auditor said he was forced to resign after opponents of Pope Francis' financial reforms mounted a campaign against him.

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OTTAWA – Years of suffering from “severe chronic pain” have forced one of Canada’s most outspoken bishops to relinquish his ministry.

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VATICAN CITY – Retired Pope Benedict XVI said in an interview that he felt a "duty" to resign from the papacy because of his declining health and the rigorous demands of papal travel.

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HOVE, England - An English Catholic bishop has resigned after admitting that he has been "unfaithful to his promises as a Catholic priest."

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BELFAST, Northern Ireland - For years, the head of the Catholic Church in Ireland, Cardinal Sean Brady, refused to heed repeated calls for him to step down over alleged cover-ups of sexual abuse of children by clergy.

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March 13, 2013

ELECTING A POPE

On March 13th, the world's cardinals in Rome elected Pope Francis following the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI. The catholicregister.org has created a special, easy-to-view section to display the news from Benedict's last days, plus all the breaking stories from the Vatican as the cardinals choose the next pope.

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ROME - St. Peter's Basilica broke out into sustained applause Tuesday morning when hours before the start of the conclave Cardinal Angelo Sodano, dean of the college of cardinals, thanked God for the "brilliant pontificate" of the 265th successor of St. Peter.

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VATICAN CITY - Basilian Father Thomas Rosica is a busy man these days.

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VATICAN CITY - The 115 cardinals participating in the conclave will know the identity of the new pope before the rest of the world, but their advance knowledge is likely to last for well over an hour, and even more in the unlikely event that the candidate they choose is not in the Sistine Chapel with them.

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Rome - Cardinals exited the final session of their pre-conclave discussions on the state of the Church just before 1:00 p.m. on Monday. Canadian Cardinal Marc Ouellet smiled and waved to reporters as he strolled through St. Peter's Square and then to lunch.

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VATICAN CITY - Though the Vatican has become increasingly savvy with more modern forms of communication, it's still sticking with more primitive methods -- swirling smoke and tolling bells -- to announce whether a new pope has been elected.

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Updated 03/11/13 - Corrections

ROME - The process of picking a pope so far has been something like a synod and something like a retreat, said Toronto's Cardinal Thomas Collins just before celebrating Sunday Mass at his titular church in Rome.

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