Francis – Initiatives and Gestures Category

Maria Fischer, Editorial board schoenstatt.org • In these very cold days, I think of and invite you to think of all of the people who live on the streets, suffering the cold and oftentimes indifference. Unfortunately, some have not survived. We pray for them and we ask the Lord to warm our hearts so that we may be able to help them. (Pope Francis, Angelus, Sunday 8 January 2017) “For January, we start with this,” shares Silvia Losada from Tucumán.  Just two days after the decision by the schoenstatt.org teamRead More
POPE FRANCIS – By Philip Kosloski, via Aleteia, and Maria Fischer Already from the beginning of his papacy, Pope Francis has demonstrated care and special attention toward humanity’s many challenges and has emphasized, on frequent occasions, his desire to create a “culture of encounter.”  This year, to deepen his cause, Pope Francis has changed the form in which he selects his monthly prayer intentions that he entrusts to the Pope’s World Web of Prayer (previously known as the Apostolate of Prayer). Since 1928, the corresponding Pope has selected two prayerRead More
FRANCIS IN THE YEAR OF MERCY • Pope Francis on 2 November expressed his proximity to the Archbishop of Spoleto-Norcia, Renato Boccardo, over the phone for the people affected by the latest earthquakes, particularly the one that took place on 30 October, and said that during his visit to Sweden he accompanied this tragedy “and from there, I prayed for you.” Norsia — also the birthplace of St. Benedict — was hit by a powerful earthquake on 24 August that also affected other parts of central Italy.  However, it wasRead More
FRANCIS IN ROME • During his weekly General Audience this morning in St. Peter’s Square, Pope Francis repeated his appeals to help the suffering nation of Syria. According to Vatican Radio, at the conclusion of the audience, Francis lamented “the dramatic news concerning the fate of the people of Aleppo.” After a ceasefire collapsed last week, rebel-held areas of Aleppo were heavily bombarded, creating a plight for the areas’ 250,000 residents.  This morning, the Syrian military announced it was launching concentrated air strikes in Aleppo and nearby areas, targeting insurgent heldRead More
FRANCIS IN ROME, Maria Fischer • Pope Francis once again offered a glimpse of the works of mercy he undertakes every Friday as part of the Jubilee of Mercy.  This time he visited the neo-natal unit at the San Giovanni Hospital in Rome and a hospice that houses 30 terminally ill patients. Where babies fight for their lives The man in white dressed in green and visited babies who are fighting for their lives in incubators, and terminally ill patients who are waiting for the end of their lives.  FrancisRead More
WYD2016, by Maria Fischer • “Lord, have mercy on your people. Lord, we ask pardon for such cruelty.” This was the message Pope Francis left in the visitors’ book in Auschwitz-Birkenau, the only words he pronounced in this place where horror surpasses words, the imagination, capable of human thought. It is a place that leaves us powerless, destroyed, afraid, horrified at what human beings were capable of doing to other human beings. The Pope did not say anything. He took his time. He simply remained there, in silence, in prayer.Read More
by Ary Waldir Ramos Díaz, aleteia.org • Pope Francis, in the midst of reforming the curia and the structures of the Holy See, was seen this Wednesday morning, 13 July, inside a pearl-coloured Toyota Yaris on his way (after a dental appointment) to the fourth floor in Conciliacion 1 road.  This is where, among other offices, the Pontifical Commission for Latin America (CAL) is located.  Surprise, the Pope is at the door! The CAL staff and their supervisors couldn’t believe it. “Incredible.” Pope Francis decided to “pop in” to theRead More
By María Fischer • On Saturday 16 April, Pope Francis returned from his 13th international apostolic visit, this time to the Greek island of Lesbos. As is customary, before ending each of these trips and returning to the Vatican, the Holy Father went to the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore to give thanks to the Blessed Mother, the Salus Populi Romani, for her protection during the trip. Before going to Lesbos on Friday, he also went to the Basilica to pray for this brief and very important journey. The PopeRead More
FRANCIS AT ROME • Pope Francis washed the feet of twelve refugees:  three Muslims, a Hindu, three Christian Copts and five Catholics (four men and a woman) during the Lord’s Supper that he celebrated on Holy Thursday afternoon at the Centro di Accoglienza per Richiedenti  (or CARA) Reception Center for those seeking asylum.  The center is located in Castelnuovo di Porto on the outskirts of Rome, where there are 892 at the center of which 554 are Muslims, 337 are Christians and two are Hindus. Mass was celebrated on theRead More
FRANCIS IN ROME – HOLY YEAR OF MERCY • “The Pope with us”: This was the title of their Twitter account. Within the framework of the Holy Year and the ‘Friday of mercy,’ that morning, Pope Francis made a surprise visit to a group of drug addicts and alcoholics in Rome at the Mario Picchi Italian Center of Solidarity. “Do not be afraid,” Francis told them during the conversation. On its website, CEIS states, “It promotes activities and interventions that seek to prevent and to combat the social exclusion ofRead More