News/International

{mosimage}WASHINGTON  - Sen. Barack Obama's speech on race March 18 at Philadelphia's National Constitution Centre may or may not significantly affect his prospects for being elected president in November, but either way it charted a new course for how race can be discussed in the United States.

Muslim writer’s public conversion upsets scholars

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{mosimage}ROME - The Muslim-born journalist baptized by Pope Benedict XVI at the Easter Vigil said he wanted a public conversion to convince other former Muslims not to be afraid of practising their new Christian faith.

Focolare founder Chiara Lubich dies

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{mosimage}ROME  - Chiara Lubich, the 88-year-old founder and perpetually smiling symbol of the Focolare movement, died early March 14 in her room near the Focolare headquarters in Rocca di Papa, south of Rome.

Violence won't solve Tibet problems, says Pope

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{mosimage}VATICAN CITY - Pope Benedict XVI asked that dialogue and tolerance replace the tensions and violence that recently erupted in Tibet.

May Easter rituals deepen faith: Pope

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{mosimage}VATICAN CITY - Pope Benedict XVI said he hoped the church's Holy Week and Easter rituals would help deepen all Catholics' conversion to Christ and their solidarity with those who suffer.

Galileo to make Vatican return

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{mosimage}VATICAN CITY - Four centuries after he was called by church officials to retract theories deemed suspect of heresy, the 17th-century Italian astronomer Galileo Galilei will be returning to Vatican City.

Pope condemns killing of Iraqi archbishop

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{mosimage}VATICAN CITY -- Pope Benedict XVI called the kidnapping and death of an Iraqi archbishop "an act of inhuman violence that offends the dignity of the human being and seriously harms the ... co-existence among the beloved Iraqi people."

Rev. Ian Paisley to resign in Northern Ireland

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{mosimage}DUBLIN, Ireland - Although some Catholics still remember the Rev. Ian Paisley's diatribes against Catholics, other praised the progress of the Protestant minister who became the highest official in the Northern Ireland government.

Iraqi archbishop kidnapped, $1 million ransom demanded

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{mosimage}VATICAN CITY - Pope Benedict XVI appealed for peace and security in Iraq after kidnappers abducted Chaldean Catholic Archbishop Paulos Faraj Rahho of Mosul, Iraq, and killed the three people who were travelling with him.

Kosovo crisis calls for moderation: Pope

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{mosimage}VATICAN CITY  - In an address to Serbia’s new ambassador to the Vatican, Pope Benedict XVI called on all parties to act with “prudence and moderation” in response to “the current crisis in Kosovo.”

Church foe Castro resigns

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{mosimage}WASHINGTON - During nearly 50 years of rule, Fidel Castro had an often-stormy relationship with the Cuban Catholic Church.