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Good politics is at the service of peace

VATICAN CITY—In today’s climate of mistrust, rejection and nationalism, the world urgently needs peacemakers and politicians who protect and lovingly serve others, Pope Francis said in his annual message for the World Day of Peace Jan. 1. “Terror exerted over those who are most vulnerable contributes to the exile of entire populations who seek a […]


Bishops asked to meet abuse survivors before February meeting

VATICAN CITY—Before traveling to Rome for a major Vatican summit on the clerical sex abuse crisis and child protection, each participating bishop should meet with survivors of abuse, said the committee organizing the meeting. “The first step must be acknowledging the truth of what has happened. For this reason, we urge each episcopal conference president […]


Pope celebrates his birthday with Vatican pediatric clinic

VATICAN CITY—If the Holy Family lived in Rome and the baby Jesus had a cold or flu, Mary and Joseph certainly would bring him to the Vatican pediatric clinic for help, Pope Francis said. The Vatican’s St. Martha Dispensary was founded in 1922 and, staffed by volunteers, it provides medical care and basic necessities to […]


Pope calls third Sunday in Advent an invitation to joy

VATICAN CITY—Pope Francis at the Sunday Angelus blessed the “Bambinelli” and said this third Sunday of Advent invites us to be joyful. The Third Sunday of Advent has for many years been the day when the children of Rome bring the Baby Jesus statues from their Nativity scenes to St. Peter’s Square to be blessed […]


Far from home, Israel’s foreign workers visit pop-up Christmas market

TEL AVIV, Israel—For foreign workers and other nonlocal Christians living in Israel, celebrating Christmas far from loved ones in a country where Christians are a minority can be a difficult time. Used to a festive Christmas season back home in the Philippines, many of the Filipino caretakers who work with mainly Jewish families have learned […]


Give the ‘look of love’ and the gift of humanity this Christmas

As they celebrated their first Christmas in America 150 years ago, our Little Sisters in Baltimore noted that the donations received included “twelve turkeys, four ducks, sixteen chickens and so many other good things that we didn’t know what to do with it all!” They concluded, “In this country Christmas is like the feast of […]


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Pope: With a mother’s heart, Mary raises up the abandoned

VATICAN CITY—Just as she did hundreds of years ago from a small hill in Tepeyac, Mexico, Mary accompanies the downtrodden and the lowly like a mother caring for her children. Mary “is a woman who walks with the gentleness and tenderness of a mother, she makes her home in family life, she unties one knot […]


Filmmaker’s ‘Camino’ documentary finally finds home on PBS

WASHINGTON—What a long, strange trip it’s been. Not walking the 500 miles in a pilgrimage from southern France to Santiago de Compostela, Spain, that Lydia B. Smith first did a decade ago. Not even making a documentary about “the Camino,” as the pilgrimage is called, when she returned a year later with a camera and […]


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Pilgrimage across U.S. lets peacemaker spread light from Bethlehem

LAFAYETTE, Ind.—Brian Duane’s maroon Subaru had already covered about 1,800 miles when he pulled into the parking lot at the Cathedral of St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception in Lafayette Dec. 4. It was Duane’s 18th stop in what would be a weeklong, cross-country journey for the resident of Pembroke, Massachusetts, and his car contained […]


The story of Our Lady of Guadalupe

The Feast Day of Our Lady of Guadalupe is celebrated Dec. 12. In honor of Our Lady, let’s take a look at the story behind the indigenous peasant who came across the Patron of the Americas, and how he fought for her message to be heard. The image of the Virgin of Guadalupe, like the […]


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