RIO DE JANEIRO - With the young pilgrims of World Youth Day, Pope Francis was encouraging and challenging; with the bishops, priests and religious who minister to them he was firm and blunt.

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RIO DE JANEIRO - Pope Francis spent the morning and early afternoon of July 26 with about two dozen young people from different countries and diverse backgrounds, in a range of encounters that illustrated his characteristic emphasis on inclusion and reconciliation.

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RIO DE JANEIRO - With his cross and resurrection, Christ promises to walk with and ease the burden of every suffering person, whether that suffering comes from violence, addiction, a broken family, hunger, persecution or the death of a loved one, Pope Francis said.

Published in World Youth Day 2013
July 25, 2013

Hope and optimism

Pope Francis is the first pope from Latin America and he ensured South America was the destination for his first foreign trip. So it was no surprise that the Argentine Pope was welcomed to World Youth Day in Brazil by huge, adoring crowds who brought his motorcade to a standstill.

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RIO DE JANEIRO - Pope Francis addressed a group of recovering drug addicts in a working-class neighborhood of Rio, offering them a message of compassion and hope as well as a call to self-determination.

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RIO DE JANEIRO - The cancellation of a scheduled Popemobile ride through a working-class neighborhood suggests that, despite official assurances, Pope Francis' chaotic entrance into the city July 22 may have raised concerns among those responsible for his safety during his first international trip as Pope.

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RIO DE JANEIRO - The mosaic of hundreds of national flags waving in the cold wind on Copacabana beach was symbolic, as pilgrims from all backgrounds, driven by a single faith, participated in the opening Mass for World Youth Day.

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RIO DE JANEIRO - The dream of trying to see Pope Francis up close ended at a police barricade for 74-year-old Odaleia Bastos.

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RIO DE JANEIRO - Pope Francis returned to his native Latin America July 22, asking for open hearts, even after the irrepressible crowds made it clear he had them.

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RIO DE JANEIRO - Hundreds of thousands of cheering people welcomed Pope Francis to Brazil July 22 as he made the first international trip of his pontificate to his native region of Latin America.

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VATICAN CITY - Sweet and simple: That's the menu plan for Pope Francis when he stays at a church-run residence during his visit to Rio de Janeiro for World Youth Day.

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VATICAN CITY - To help encourage prayers for a spiritually fruitful World Youth Day in Rio de Janeiro, the Vatican announced July 9 that Pope Francis authorized a special indulgence for those who attend the event's liturgies and prayer services or follow along online in the proper spirit of prayer and contrition.

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SAO PAULO - Leaders of the Brazilian bishops' conference announced their support for the massive demonstrations sweeping across South America's largest nation, but declined to say how they might affect World Youth Day activities and the visit of Pope Francis in July.

Published in International

TORONTO - With World Youth Day just over two months away, pilgrims are scrambling to fundraise their way to Rio, Brazil, in July.

Published in Youth Speak News

SAO PAULO (CNS) -- World Youth Day organizers have chosen a spot in Rio de Janeiro's Guaratiba neighborhood, nearly 60 miles from the city center, for the vigil and closing Mass July 27-28.

Published in International