ROME, Italy – As colder weather settled over Rome last week, two area charities have found ways to reach out to those without food or shelter during the cold winter nights: one by turning a church into a temporary shelter, another by partnering with a newly-opened McDonald’s near the Vatican.

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VATICAN CITY – A McDonald’s opening in the shadow of St. Peter’s Basilica is to offer free meals to the homeless in a move aimed at defusing controversy over the fast food restaurant.

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ROME – Pope Francis warned thousands of pilgrims to be wary of criminals seeking to sell tickets to his weekly Vatican audience, which is always free.

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VATICAN CITY – nice theory, but must be actively pursued with concrete policies aimed at promoting the common good and the dignity of the human person.

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VATICAN CITY – More than 3.9 million pilgrims visited and attended papal events, liturgies or prayer services during the Holy Year of Mercy in 2016, the Vatican said.

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VATICAN CITY – Despite increased persecution and attacks against Christians, the faithful must strengthen their courage and joyful desire to follow Christ no matter the cost, Pope Francis said.

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VATICAN CITY – After the recent unauthorized ordination of bishops in China, which falls just ahead of a major meeting for Chinese Catholic representatives, the Vatican has issued a statement reaffirming their position on the matter.

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VATICAN CITY – A Vatican decision to reaffirm its opposition to gay priests has angered activists who thought Pope Francis was changing Rome’s attitudes toward homosexuality.

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VATICAN CITY – The updated version of the Vatican's document on priestly formation, released Wednesday, deals with issues of clericalism, homosexuality, and the protection of minors, among other things.

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VATICAN CITY – Women – lay and religious – make up almost 20 per cent of the Vatican workforce, and a group of them have formed an association designed as a forum for collaboration, sharing and outreach.

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VIENNA, Austria – In order to realize the goal of a world free of nuclear weapons the discourse of the international community surrounding nuclear security must be based on an ethic of trust, responsibility, and cooperation – not fear and suspicion, Vatican official Msgr. Antoine Camilleri said Tuesday.

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VATICAN CITY – For the first time, the works of Dutch artist Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn will be displayed at the Vatican.

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VATICAN CITY – On Wednesday Pope Francis added world famous director Martin Scorsese to the list of Hollywood stars he has welcomed for a private meeting in the Vatican, following an official Rome preview of Scorsese’s new film Silence.

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VATICAN CITY – The growing problem of drug abuse and increasingly creative and sophisticated ways suppliers reach users call for increased cooperation in preventing and stopping substance abuse, said several speakers at a Vatican-sponsored workshop.

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VATICAN CITY – As the Vatican and Vietnam continue discussions aimed at establishing full diplomatic relations, Pope Francis welcomed President Tran Dai Quang to the Vatican Nov. 23.

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