Public invited to attend pope's weekly general audiences starting Sept. 2

VATICAN CITY -- Twenty-six weeks after his last weekly general audience in St. Peter's Square, Pope Francis will resume his audiences with the public present, but in a Vatican courtyard.

    God's Word on Sunday: We cannot turn our back on God’s call for us

    22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time, Aug. 30 (Year A) Jeremiah 20:7-9; Psalm 63; Romans 12:1-2; Matthew 16:21-27

    Jeremiah, ever the reluctant prophet, was bitter, disillusioned and angry. He felt that he had been sold down the river by God. In fact, the Hebrew word that is translated as “enticed” has an even stronger connotation — seduction and force.

      Pope Francis extends Loreto jubilee to 2021

      VATICAN CITY -- Since many of the celebrations of the Our Lady of Loreto jubilee year were grounded because of the coronavirus pandemic, Pope Francis has extended the celebration to December 2021.

        God's Word on Sunday: Power must be used for benefit of all

        21st Sunday in Ordinary Time, Aug. 23 (Year A) Isaiah 22:15, 19-23; Psalm 138; Romans 11:33-36; Matthew 16:13-20

        Power is not a right and not something to be coveted or seized. Any position or exercise of power is for the common good and the benefit of others.

          Weapons must be set aside for peace to flourish, Pope Francis says

          VATICAN CITY -- For peace to flourish, weapons of war must be set aside, especially nuclear weapons that can obliterate entire cities and countries, Pope Francis said on the 75th anniversary of the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima.

            God's Word on Sunday: God’s message is meant for all people

            20th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Aug. 16 (Year A) Isaiah 56:1, 6-7; Psalm 67; Romans 11:13-15, 29-32; Matthew 15:21-28

            “Maintain justice and do what is right.”

              Mary Marrocco: We’ll find strength in letting go the ‘littleness’

              One of many arresting moments in J.R.R. Tolkien’s masterfully gripping The Lord of the Rings involves Merry, one of Frodo’s three hobbit friends who accompany him on his journey to destroy the ring of power. Merry finds himself at the centre of a great battle, with one of the Nazgul (dread servants of the Enemy) bearing down on the King whom Merry has sworn to serve. When the King is struck down, with horror all around him, Merry starts to crawl away. Something inside calls him to return — but “his will would not answer” and he keeps fleeing in the other direction.

                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."

                      God's Word on Sunday: True silence is filled with possibilities

                      19th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Aug. 9 (Year A) 1 Kings 19:9, 11-13; Psalm 85; Romans 9:1-5; Matthew 14:22-23

                      God is certainly capable of great deeds of power. This is most evident in the Exodus account of the Old Testament. But there is another side of God — God’s preferred side — that is quiet, gentle and often disguised to the point of invisibility.