Catholic News Service

Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Two couples attending the Synod of Bishops on the family said what surprised them most about their first synod in Rome was reading inaccurate media coverage of the closed-door proceedings, the diversity of problems families face around the world and the synod fathers' great concern and compassion for the family.

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- The first week of the Synod of Bishops on the family ended with near unanimous calls to be more positive in describing family life today and to show more appreciation for Catholic families living close to the church's ideals. But there were also widespread questions among synod participants about the work they are expected to produce.

KIGALI, Rwanda - A Rwandan government commission has criticized the dismissal of genocide charges against a Catholic priest who fled to France after the 1994 mass killing of the African country's Tutsi inhabitants.

VIENNA - The head of the Ukrainian Catholic Church has urged the Vatican to show greater support for his country, as a senior Vatican diplomat warned the country risked becoming "a kind of Somalia."

ROSEBURG, Ore. - The gunman behind the Oct. 1 massacre at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg reportedly asked students whether they were Christian.

VATICAN CITY - For World Communications Day 2016, Pope Francis has chosen the theme "Communication and Mercy: A fruitful encounter."

CARMEL, Calif. - Days after St. Junipero Serra was canonized by Pope Francis in Washington, a statue of the 18th-century Franciscan missionary and other property at the Carmel Mission where the saint is buried were defaced.

WASHINGTON - Pope Francis introduced himself to President Barack Obama and all people of the United States as a "son of an immigrant family" arriving in the United States for the first time to learn from others and to share from his own experience.

OUAGADOUGOU, Burkina Faso - Bishops in Burkina Faso, one of Africa's most Catholic countries, have denounced a Sept. 16 military coup and demanded that democratic elections proceed as planned.

SANTO DOMINGO, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC - Pope Francis’ visit to Cuba and the United States comes as people and politicians in both countries increasingly support ending an economic embargo that has been in place for more than five decades.