Roman Catholic Church - updates

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French priest at heart of church abuse scandal defrocked

Jul 04, 2019 - 10:59 PM

The allegations against priest Bernard Preynat sparked the biggest crisis in the French church in decades, drawing in its most influential cleric, Cardinal Philippe Barbarin

Vatican moves to counter gender theory in education

Jun 11, 2019 - 11:34 AM

The Church is trying to promote 'dialogue on the question of gender in education,' Milan's Gonzague Institute professor Roberto Zappala says in a statement

St Peter's basilica reflects in a puddle of Via della Conciliazione on May 9, 2018 in Rome.  Tiziana FABI / AFP

Pope accepts resignation of Brazilian bishop – Vatican

May 17, 2019 - 8:14 PM

The bishop is under investigation for alleged extortion of priests in his diocese, and the covering-up of sexual abuse cases, according to Brazilian media reports

Priest stabbed during mass at Canada's biggest church

Mar 22, 2019 - 11:45 PM

The suspect is arrested at the Roman Catholic basilica shortly after the attack in front of 50 people and a television audience, while priest Claude Grou is taken to hospital

CHURCH ATTACK. Catholic Priest Claude Grou was stabbed during a livestreamed morning mass on March 22, 2019, at Canada's biggest church, Saint Joseph's Oratory in Montreal, police said. Photo by Daniel Slim/AFP

French cardinal convicted over sex abuse cover-up

Mar 07, 2019 - 6:26 PM

(UPDATED) 'I have decided to go to see the Holy Father to hand him my resignation. He will receive me in a few days' time,' Cardinal Philippe Barbarin says after the verdict

CONVICTED. In this file photo taken on April 03, 2016 Roman Catholic Cardinal, Archbishop of Lyon, Philippe Barbarin leads a mass, in Saint-Jean cathedral in Lyon. File photo by Jeff Pachoud/AFP

Vatican to open archives of WWII pope Pius XII in 2020

Mar 04, 2019 - 10:06 PM

Researchers have long sought to examine the archives over why Pius XII did not intervene more against the Holocaust perpetrated by the German Nazis

VATICAN. In this file photo taken on April 02, 2018 people gather in St Peter's square during Pope Francis' Regina Coeli prayer from the window of the apostolic palace in Vatican. File photo by Tiziana Fabi/AFP

France urges Vatican to act after envoy charged with sex abuse

Mar 01, 2019 - 7:23 PM

'I am waiting for the Holy See to assume its responsibilities,' French European Minister Nathalie Loiseau says when asked if Luigi Ventura should see his diplomatic immunity lifted

Vatican to open probe into Cardinal Pell over child sex abuse

Feb 27, 2019 - 7:56 PM

The investigation could result in a canonical trial and George Pell's eventual expulsion from the priesthood

VATICAN PROBE. Cardinal George Pell (C) makes his way to the court in Melbourne on February 27, 2019. Photo by Con Chronis/AFP

Vatican has 'utmost respect' for justice after Pell conviction

Feb 26, 2019 - 9:28 PM

Cardinal George Pell, one of Pope Francis' closest advisers, has been found guilty of sexually assaulting two choirboys, becoming the most senior Catholic cleric ever convicted of child sex crimes

CONVICTED. Australian Cardinal George Pell looks on as he makes a statement at the Holy See Press Office, Vatican City on June 29, 2017. File photo by Alberto Pizzoli/AFP

Cardinal calls for global recognition of sex abuse in Catholic Church

Feb 22, 2019 - 10:01 PM

'The entire Church must take an honest look, undertake rigorous discernment, and then act decisively,' says Indian Cardinal Oswald Gracias

'TAKE AN HONEST LOOK.' Indian cardinal Oswald Gracias (R) arrives for a grand mass in St Peter's Basilica ahead of a papal election conclave on March 12, 2013 in St Peter's basilica at the Vatican. File photo by Gabriel Bouys/AFP

'Concrete measures' on sex abuse needed, pope tells Vatican summit

Feb 21, 2019 - 6:09 PM

(UPDATED) 'We humbly and sorrowfully admit that wounds have been inflicted by us bishops on the victims and in fact the entire body of Christ,' Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle tells the assembly

PRAYER. Pope Francis prays during the opening of a global child protection summit for reflections on the sex abuse crisis within the Catholic Church, on February 21, 2019 at the Vatican. Photo by Vincenzo Pinto/Pool/AFP

France probes sexual assault claim against Vatican envoy

Feb 15, 2019 - 9:43 PM

The envoy, 74-year-old Luigi Ventura, is accused of molesting a man at the Paris townhall on January 17 when Mayor Anne Hidalgo gave a New Year's address to diplomats, religious leaders, and civil society figures

ENVOY. French President Emannuel Macron (L) shakes hands with Apostolic Nuncio to France Luigi Ventura during his New Year wishes to the diplomatic corps on January 4, 2018, at the Elysee Palace in Paris. File photo by Ludovic Marin/AFP

Pope says priest celibacy not 'optional'

Jan 28, 2019 - 9:15 PM

'Personally I think that celibacy is a gift to the Church. Secondly, I don't think optional celibacy should be allowed. No,' says Pope Francis

ON CELIBACY. This file photo shows Pope Francis during a meeting with bishops at the sacristy of the Metropolitan Cathedral, in Santiago on January 16, 2018. File photo by Luca Zennaro/Pool/AFP

Pope Francis announces Japan visit in November

Jan 23, 2019 - 9:12 PM

The pope has made two trips to Asia since his election 5 years ago, visiting the Philippines and Sri Lanka in 2014, followed by Myanmar and Bangladesh in 2017

JAPAN VISIT. Pope Francis announces his plan to visit Japan in November 2019. File photo by Filippo Monteforte/AFP

Second Chinese underground bishop steps aside

Dec 19, 2018 - 4:46 PM

There are an estimated 10 million Catholics in China, divided between a government-run association whose clergy are chosen by the Communist Party, and the unofficial church loyal to the Vatican

Chinese tourists take pictures in front of the Sacred Heart Cathedral, also known as the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, or Shishi Catholic Church, in Guangzhou, in Guangdong province on September 22, 2018. China and the Vatican will push to improve bilateral ties after the two sides signed a "provisional" agreement on the appointment of bishops, the Chinese foreign ministry said on September 22, 2018. Johannes EISELE / AFP

Jesuits release list of 89 U.S. priests accused of sex abuse

Dec 18, 2018 - 9:46 AM

The disclosures by the Jesuit provinces of Maryland and USA Midwest are the latest chapter in the ongoing sexual abuse scandal roiling the Catholic Church

California nuns stole school funds for Vegas gambling, travel

Dec 11, 2018 - 1:49 PM

Sisters Mary Margaret Kreuper and Lana Chang, who are said to be best friends, took the money from tuition, fees, and donations at St. James Catholic School

U.S. opens federal investigation into Catholic Church abuse

Oct 19, 2018 - 3:22 PM

'The archdiocese will cooperate with the United States Department of Justice in this matter,' says the Archdiocese of Philadelphia

New York subpoenas every Catholic diocese in state

Sep 07, 2018 - 2:25 PM

All 8 Catholic dioceses have either been or are in the process of being subpoenaed by New York's state attorney general

SUBPOENAS. In this file photo taken on September 7, 2015, St. Patrick's Cathedral, the seat of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York, is viewed in New York City. Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images North America/AFP

Irish PM urges action on abuse as Pope admits 'shame and pain'

Aug 25, 2018 - 6:36 PM

(UPDATED) Pope Francis is in Ireland to close the 2018 World Meeting of Families

ARRIVAL. Pope Francis disembarks from the plane on his arrival at Dublin International Airport on August 25, 2018, at the start of his visit to Ireland to attend the 2018 World Meeting of Families. Photo by Paul Faith/AFP

Pope accepts resignation of 3 Chilean bishops in sex abuse scandal

Jun 11, 2018 - 7:35 PM

(UPDATED) Several members of the Chilean church hierarchy are accused by victims of ignoring and covering up child abuse by Chilean pedophile priest Fernando Karadima during the 1980s and 1990s

Pope Francis meets with participants at the Children's Train event at the Vatican on June 9, 2018  Vincenzo PINTO / AFP

14 priests linked to Chile sex abuse stripped of duties

May 23, 2018 - 3:52 PM

Nicknamed 'the Family,' the group of priestly offenders committed sex abuses with young people including minors, churchgoer Elisa Fernandez tells Channel 13 last week

SCANDAL. A man walks past an altar at the Metropolitan Cathedral in Santiago, on May 18, 2018. File photo by Claudio Reyes/AFP

All Chilean bishops quit over child abuse scandal – spokesman

May 18, 2018 - 11:05 PM

The striking announcement comes after Francis summoned the bishops to the Vatican over the scandal that has come to haunt his papacy

RESIGNED. Members of Chile's bishops conference Luis Fernando Ramos Perez (right) and Juan Ignacio Gonzalez give a press conference, on May 18, 2018 in Vatican. Photo by Vincenzo Pinto/ AFP

Pope Francis receives Chilean bishops over sex abuse scandal

May 15, 2018 - 9:44 PM

The 34 bishops, 3 of whom are already retired, are to hold private and group meetings at the Vatican with the Argentine Pontiff

OFFENDERS. In this videograb members of Chile's bishops conference Luis Fernando Ramos Perez (left) and Juan Ignacio Gonzalez give a press conference on May 14, 2018 in Vatican. Photo by  Luca Prizia/AFP

Pope Francis speaks out for terminally-ill British toddler

Apr 18, 2018 - 9:08 PM

'I want to reiterate and strongly confirm that the only master of life, from the beginning to its natural end, is God, and our duty is to do everything to protect life,' says the Pope

LIFE. Pope Francis talks to journalists during a press conference held on board the flight to Rome, at the end of a five-day visit to Colombia, on September 11, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Andrew Medichini

Vatican revives pope's sexual abuse panel

Feb 17, 2018 - 11:38 PM

'The newly-appointed members will add to the commission's global perspective in the protection of minors and vulnerable adults,' says US Cardinal Sean O'Malley

VATICAN CITY. In this file photo, Pope Francis speaks to pilgrims, gathered on St. Peter's square at the Vatican, from the window of his apartment during his Sunday Regina Coeli prayer on June 1, 2014. Photo by AFP / Vincenzo Pinto

Pope denounces violence in visit to restive region of Chile

Jan 18, 2018 - 8:36 AM

The Argentine-born pontiff was shining the spotlight on the simmering conflict between the Chilean state and the Mapuche people

AMONG THE PEOPLE. Pope Francis waves crowds from the popemobile on his way to Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, in Santiago on January 17, 2018. Pablo Vera Lisperguer/AFP

Pope voices nuclear war concerns as he begins Latin America trip

Jan 16, 2018 - 8:08 AM

'I am really afraid of this. One accident is enough to precipitate things.'

HAPPY IN CHILE. Pope Francis smiles at the faithful from the Popemobile in Santiago, on January 15, 2018. Eitan Abramovich/AFP

Pope sets off on trip to Chile and Peru

Jan 15, 2018 - 4:19 PM

The 81-year old Argentine will hop on 10 flights to travel over 30,000 kilometers through hot and humid climates for his 22nd trip abroad

AWAITING FRANCIS. Banners welcoming Pope Francis to Peru are seen in Lima on January 13, 2018. Ernesto Benavidez/AFP

Ahead of pope's Chile visit, priests accused of child sex abuse

Jan 11, 2018 - 8:03 AM

Almost 80 Roman Catholic clergy have been accused of sexually abusing children in Chile since 2000, a US-based monitoring group says

SANTIAGO CATHEDRAL. Aerial picture taken on January 4, 2018 showing the Metropolitan Cathedral of Santiago, where Pope Francis will be giving mass during his upcoming visit to Chile. Javier Torres/AFP

U.S. Cardinal Law, forced to quit over sex abuse scandal, dies aged 86

Dec 20, 2017 - 3:46 PM

(UPDATED) The former Boston cardinal had fallen from grace after he allegedly shielded priests involved in a wide-reaching sex abuse scandal that shook the Roman Catholic Church and eclipsed his long and at one-time venerated career

CARDINAL LAW. US Cardinal Bernard Francis Law prays during the Eucharistic celebration with the new cardinals on November 21, 2010 at St Peter's basilica at The Vatican. File photo by Alberto Pizzoli/AFP

Cake for 'joyful' pope on his 81st birthday

Dec 17, 2017 - 9:59 PM

Pope Francis's birthday this year falls on Gaudete Sunday, which the church marks as a moment of particular joy as celebrations for the birth of Jesus Christ approach

 POPE FRANCIS. This handout picture released by Roman pastry Hedera Sweetness and Co. shows a birthday cake offered to Pope Francis for his 81st birthday, on December 17, 2017 in Rome. HEDERA-MAUPAL/AFP

New CBCP head tells priests, nuns: Repent

Dec 03, 2017 - 7:20 AM

Davao Archbishop Romulo Valles calls for 'humble repentance and reparation' for 'occasions of frailty and scandals' among priests and nuns

NEXT HEAD. Davao Archbishop Romulo Valles (1st from left) is the new president of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines. Photo by Roy Lagarde

Pope leads Dhaka mass before Rohingya meeting

Dec 01, 2017 - 1:45 PM

Francis, the first pope to visit Muslim-majority Bangladesh in 31 years, arrives in a locally-made popemobile at Suhrawardy Udyan park where nearly 100,000 people wait to celebrate the mass

MASS. Pope Francis performs rituals as he leads mass for Bangladeshi Christians in Dhaka on December 1, 2017. Photo by Vincenzo PINTO/AFP

Pope flies to Bangladesh after contentious Myanmar visit

Nov 30, 2017 - 3:39 PM

The pope lands in Bangladesh, a country struggling to provide for the more than 620,000 Rohingya who have crushed into its refugee camps after fleeing persecution in Myanmar

WITH THE BISHOPS. Pope Francis meets with bishops of Myanmar at St. Mary's Cathedral in Yangon on November 29, 2017. Andrew Medichini/Pool/AFP

Pope preaches forgiveness in landmark mass for Myanmar Catholics

Nov 29, 2017 - 11:16 AM

(UPDATED) He urges his audience to forgo anger and respond with 'forgiveness and compassion'

VIVA IL PAPA. Pope Francis waves to the Catholic faithful as he arrives at the stadium where he is scheduled to say mass in Yangon on November 29, 2017. Lilian Suwanrumpha/AFP

Pope to meet Myanmar's leader Suu Kyi

Nov 28, 2017 - 2:51 PM

After the talks in the capital Naypyidaw, the pontiff will address Suu Kyi and diplomats there – his first opportunity to speak publicly about the conflict that looms over his trip

MEETING. Pope Francis shakes hands with Myanmar’s civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi during their meeting in Naypyidaw on November 28, 2017. Photo by Max Rossi/POOL/AFP

Pope arrives in Myanmar on high-stakes visit

Nov 27, 2017 - 7:12 AM

(4th UPDATE) The country is holding its breath over what the pontiff will say on Myanmar soil, where any mention of the word Rohingya could unleash anger from a public that broadly supports the army campaign

WELCOME. Pope Francis is greeted by children in traditional clothing upon his arrival at Yangon International Airport on November 27, 2017. Photo by Vincenzo Pinto/AFP

'Put down those smartphones!' Pope Francis tells bishops

Nov 08, 2017 - 8:41 PM

The Pope says 'At a certain point the priest leading the ceremony says 'lift up our hearts'. He doesn't say 'lift up our mobile phones to take photographs'

ENOUGH SNAPS. Pope Francis waves during his weekly audience at St.Peter's Square in Vatican city, on November 8, 2017. Photo by Filippo Monteforte/AFP

Pope Francis admits to snoozing while praying

Nov 01, 2017 - 10:39 PM

The head of the Roman Catholic Church confesses he sometimes falls asleep while praying and claims saints too have been known to grab some Holy shut-eye

SNOOZE. Pope Francis ooks at a child as he attends a meeting with members of the Scholas Occurrentes initiative, in Palazzo San Calisto in Rome on October 26, 2017.  Photo by Andrew Medichini/AFP

Pope urges world to act on causes of migration crisis

Oct 16, 2017 - 8:40 PM

Francis says love rather than pity should be placed at the heart of international development efforts, and throws his weight behind efforts in the UN to negotiate a global accord on managed, safe migration

POPE AT FAO. Pope Francis delivers a speech during a meeting at the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) headquarters, on October 16, 2017 in Rome, on the occasion of World Food Day. Alberto Pizzoli/AFP

Some 50 witnesses for Cardinal Pell sex abuse hearing

Oct 06, 2017 - 9:32 AM

(UPDATED) The exact details and nature of the allegations against Cardinal George Pell have not been made public, other than they involve 'multiple complainants'

50 WITNESSES. Cardinal George Pell (center L) leaves after a committal hearing relating to charges of historical sex abuse at the Melbourne Magistrates Court on October 6, 2017. Photo by Mal Fairclough/AFP

Australia gay marriage debate highlights church divisions

Sep 11, 2017 - 2:36 PM

Although attitudes to same sex marriage vary across denominations and congregations many Australians view the church as the greatest source of resistance to such unions

OPPOSED. This picture taken on September 9, 2017 shows protesters holding up banners at an anti same-sex marriage rally in Sydney. Peter Parks/AFP

Pope leaves Colombia with prayers for peace

Sep 11, 2017 - 10:08 AM

On the last day of his fifth visit as pope to his native continent he reiterates calls for peace in Colombia and prays for a peaceful end to Venezuela s grave crisis

GOODBYE, COLOMBIA. Pope Francis waves just before leaving, at the Rafael Nunez airport in Cartagena on September 10, 2017. Luis Acosta/AFP

1.3M join pope's mass in Colombia's ex-'narco city'

Sep 10, 2017 - 7:41 AM

In Medellin he urges the Church to get out its comfort zone in order to confront challenges such as Colombia s peace process

IN MEDELLIN. Pope Francis waves from the Popemobile on his way to the Enrique Olaya Herrera airport, in Medellin, Colombia, on September 9, 2017. Joaquin Sarmiento/AFP

Pope prays for peace in Colombia, Venezuela

Sep 07, 2017 - 8:24 AM

Pope Francis lands in Colombia to plead for lasting peace in a country moving towards the end of a half century war and prays for stability in its crisis stricken neighbor Venezuela

POPE IN BOGOTA. Pope Francis waves from the Popemobile upon arrival in Bogota, Colombia, on September 6, 2017. John Vizcaino/AFP

Pope backs Australian cardinal in fight against sex abuse charges

Jun 29, 2017 - 3:52 PM

Cardinal George Pell says he has been a victim of relentless character assassination and vows to clear his name and return to work in Rome

UNDER INVESTIGATION. In this file photo, Vatican finance chief Cardinal George Pell speaks to the media at the Quirinale hotel in Rome on March 3, 2016 at the end of evidence via video-link to Australia's Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse in Sydney for a second of three days. Andreas Solaro/AFP

Vatican finance chief charged with child sex abuse

Jun 29, 2017 - 9:15 AM

UPDATED Cardinal George Pell the Vatican s finance chief and the highest ranking Catholic cleric to face such charges had been interviewed in Rome by Australian police last October over the allegations

CHARGED. In this file photo, the Vatican finance chief, Australian Cardinal George Pell attends a mass for the ordination of new bishops on March 19, 2016 at St Peter's basilica in Vatican. Vincenzo Pinto/AFP

Pope Francis injects new blood into cardinals club

Jun 29, 2017 - 7:29 AM

Four of the 5 new cardinals come from countries that have never had a cardinal before: El Salvador Laos Mali and Sweden; the fifth is from Spain

NEW CARDINALS. This handout picture released by the Vatican press office shows Pope Francis and Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI during a meeting with new Cardinals, from right, Louis-Marie Ling Mangkhanekhoun, Laos; Anders Arborelius, Sweden; Gregorio Rosa Chavez, El Salvador; Juan Jose Omella, Spain; and Jean Zerbo, Mali, after the ceremony of their elevation at the Vatican, on June 28, 2017. Osservatore Romano/AFP

Pope Francis to make pilgrimage to Fatima for child saints-to-be

May 10, 2017 - 2:24 PM

Some 400 000 pilgrims from around the world will welcome the Argentine pontiff on the giant esplanade that faces the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Fatima in Portugal

FATIMA CHILDREN. Lucia Santos, Jacinta and Francisco Marto, the 3 children whom the Virgin Mary revealed her famous '3 secrets' in Fatima, Portugal. Photo attributed to Joshua Benoliel in Ilustracao Portuguesa no. 610, 29 October 1917 / Public Domain / WikiMedia Commons