VATICAN – "No effort must be spared" to prevent future cases of clerical sexual abuse and "to prevent the possibility of their being covered up," Pope Francis said in a letter addressed "to the people of God."

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VATICAN – In the wake of a grand jury report on clergy sexual abuse in six dioceses in Pennsylvania, a Vatican spokesman called the abuses described in the report as being "criminal and morally reprehensible."
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VATICAN – Pope Francis is traveling to Ireland specifically for the World Meeting of Families, but the sex abuse crisis is dominating headlines before his Aug. 25-26 trip.
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Aretha Franklin, a singer who began her career with gospel music and was later crowned the “Queen of Soul,” died Thursday (Aug. 16) after battling a range of health issues. She was 76.
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VATICAN – Mary's assumption into heaven was a special sign of God's favor, but it also indicates God's desire to save all people, body and soul, Pope Francis said.
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MANDALAY, Myanmar – Cardinal Charles Bo of Yangon, Myanmar, hailed Pope Francis' admonition that imposing the death penalty is always inadmissible.

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ROME – Members of the Catholic Church sin and give scandal, it's true, Pope Francis said, but it is up to each Catholic to live the faith as authentically as possible and witness to the world the love of Jesus.
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VATICAN – Being a Christian isn't just about not doing evil, but it is a daily exercise in loving others through good works and deeds, Pope Francis said.
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VATICAN – Like the ancient Israelites, Christians today also can fall into the temptation of creating their own idols when difficulties and uncertainties arise, Pope Francis said.
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VATICAN CITY – After the bishops of Chile issued a formal apology for failing to listen to clerical abuse victims and drew up national guidelines for responding to abuse allegations, Pope Francis sent them a handwritten letter of thanks.
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SANTIAGO, Chile – Chile's bishops acknowledged they had "failed to fulfill our duty by not listening, believing, attending or accompanying the victims of grave sins" after a five-day meeting to discuss the clergy sexual abuse crisis rocking the country.
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JAKARTA, Indonesia – At least 91 people have been confirmed dead after a magnitude 7 earthquake struck Indonesia's Lombok Island on Aug. 5 a week after another powerful quake killed more than a dozen people.
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VATICAN – Doing God's will means first of all believing in Jesus and allowing love for him to translate into love for one's neighbors, Pope Francis said.
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VATICAN – The courage, prayer and creativity that should characterize every Jesuit's ministry must be especially present when ministering to young people who are unemployed and feel hopeless, Pope Francis said.
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VATICAN – Idolatry is a human inclination that spares neither believers nor atheists and deprives people of life and love in exchange for slavery to unfulfilled dreams, Pope Francis said.
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