Vatican - updates

Rappler's latest stories on Vatican


7 years after stepping down, Benedict fuels 'two popes' headache

Feb 11, 2020 - 12:58 PM

As the 'emeritus' Pope Benedict XVI continues in his retirement to write on the great themes of the Church, friction has arisen, most recently over the topic of married priests

VATICAN CITY, VATICAN - DECEMBER 24, 2007 - Pope Benedict XVI holds the cross as he celebrates the Midnight Mass for Christmas, in Saint Peter's Basilica at the Vatican.

Pope to visit Malta in May

Feb 10, 2020 - 10:32 PM

The visit, to both the main island of Malta and the archipelago's island of Gozo, is the pontiff's first announced journey for 2020

VISITING MALTA. Pope Francis addresses worshipers from the window of the Apostolic palace overlooking St. Peter's Square during the Sunday Angelus prayer on February 9, 2020 in the Vatican. Photo by Filippo Monteforte/AFP

Pope Francis repeats support for celibacy after Benedict outburst

Jan 14, 2020 - 4:07 PM

The head of the Vatican's press center, Matteo Bruni, quotes Pope Francis as saying: 'Personally I think that celibacy is a gift to the Church. Secondly, I don't think optional celibacy should be allowed. No.'

Pope Francis (C) has a lunch with people, on November 17, 2019, at the Paul VI audience hall in Vatican, to mark the World Day of the Poor. (Photo by Vincenzo PINTO / AFP)

Ex-pope Benedict rejects opening up priesthood to married men

Jan 13, 2020 - 8:49 AM

'I cannot keep silent!' Benedict writes in a book, which follows an extraordinary meeting of bishops last year that recommended the ordination of married men in certain circumstances

PONTIFFS. Pope Francis (L) meets with Pope Benedict XVI (R) at the Vatican. (Photo by Handout/Vatican handout/AFP)

Pope appoints new envoy to France after abuse claims

Jan 11, 2020 - 8:15 PM

French investigators have looked into claims made against former ambassador to France Luigi Venture, who has denied the allegations of sexual abuse

NEW ENVOY. Pope Francis names Italian Archbishop Celestino Migliore the Vatican's new envoy to France. Photo by Janek Skarzynski/AFP

Pope says sorry for slapping devotee's hand

Jan 01, 2020 - 8:12 PM

Pope Francis confesses he had 'lost patience' with the admirer who had grabbed his hand

Defrocked US cardinal gave money to top clerics – report

Dec 28, 2019 - 12:21 AM

Theodore McCarrick, who faces accusations of sexual harassment, sent checks totaling more than $600,000 to clerics in Rome and elsewhere

ABUSE. Evidence of sexual abuse was found against former US cardinal Theodore McCarrick of Washington. File photo by Chip Somodevilla/AFP

Pope shakes up cardinals with further Vatican reform

Dec 21, 2019 - 11:02 PM

Pope Francis limits the college dean's term to two five-year terms – a change from current rules that allow the dean to remain in post as long as he chooses

Pope admits Church losing clout, calls for 'change in mentality'

Dec 21, 2019 - 8:41 PM

'We are no longer the only ones today to produce culture, neither the first nor the most listened to,' says Pope Francis

CHANGE OF THINKING. Pope Francis calls on the Roman Curia to embrace new ideas as they lose influence in the modern world. Photo by Vincenzo Pinto/AFP

Pope lifts 'pontifical secret' for sex abuse cases

Dec 17, 2019 - 10:10 PM

So-called pontifical secrecy is a rule of confidentiality designed to protect sensitive information related to the governance of the Roman Catholic Church

Pope Francis leads Simbang Gabi: ‘Be smugglers of faith’

Dec 16, 2019 - 8:02 AM

The Simbang Gabi has already been held 4 times in Saint Peter’s Basilica, but it is the first time that a Pope presided over a Simbang Gabi

POPE FRANCIS. Pope Francis (C) celebrates a mass for the Filipino community on December 15, 2019 at St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican. Photo by Tiziana Fabi/AFP

Tagle’s office eyed as 2nd most important in Vatican

Dec 11, 2019 - 1:28 PM

The new appointment of Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle positions him ‘to be a possible successor to Pope Francis,’ says a Vatican analyst

Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

'His heart is broken': Vatican prefect Tagle breaks into tears

Dec 10, 2019 - 11:20 AM

Be happy to let him go, the Vatican's ambassador tells Filipinos

NEW APPOINTMENT. Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle breaks into tears in a Mass on December 9, 2019, a day after the Vatican announced his appointment as prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Cardinal Tagle seen to step down as Manila archbishop

Dec 09, 2019 - 11:54 AM

As the powerful ‘Red Pope,’ Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle is expected to address hot-button issues such as the Vatican’s policy toward China

FIESTA MASS. Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle presides over the Mass for the Feast of the Immaculate Conception on December 9, 2019. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Cardinal Tagle to lead top Vatican office

Dec 08, 2019 - 8:45 PM

Pope Francis names Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle as part of his 'Cabinet,' making Tagle one of the most powerful men in the Catholic Church

Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle gives his homily at the Chrism Mass at the Manila Cathedral. Hindreds of priests from different diocesea of the Archdiocese of Manila concelebrated with the archbishop. Photo by Angie de Silva

U.S. bishop steps down in Church abuse scandal

Dec 05, 2019 - 11:41 AM

The Vatican says in a statement that it accepts the resignation of Bishop Richard Malone, from the Buffalo diocese in New York state

REPLACEMENT. Bishop Edward Scharfenberger speaks to members of the media following the resignation of Bishop Richard Malone, during a press conference at the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo on December 4, 2019 in Buffalo, New York. Photo by Aaron Lynett/AFP

Zombies, brollies and happis: Key moments of Pope Francis' Japan trip

Nov 26, 2019 - 3:50 PM

Here are some highlights of the Pope's four-day trip, which capped an Asia tour that also took in Thailand

IMPERIAL VISITOR. Pope Francis (right) arrives to meet with Japan's Emperor Naruhito at the Imperial Palace in Toyko on November 25, 2019. Photo by Behrouz Mehri/AFP

'Peace prayer': Muslim choir from restive Thai south to sing for Pope Francis

Nov 22, 2019 - 1:58 PM

Wearing headscarves and school uniforms, students assemble in a university auditorium to practice ballads specially written for the Pope, who is in Bangkok for a four-day visit

This picture taken on November 21, 2019 shows Muslim students from the Attarkia Islamiah Institute singing during a rehearsal in Bangkok, ahead of their performance for Pope Francis at Chulalongkorn University. Gripped by nervous excitement, young Muslim singers from Thailand's conflict-plagued south gather for choir practice ahead of a performance of a lifetime -- for Pope Francis himself, who is in Bangkok as part of his whirlwind Asia tour. Joe Freeman / AFP

Vatican ends contract of top anti-money laundering official

Nov 19, 2019 - 8:19 AM

The Vatican statement says: 'Thanking him for his service in recent years (the Holy Father) has appointed his successor,' adding that Rene Bruelhart's mandate had expired

Swiss Rene Bruelhart (Brülhart), President of the Board of Directors of the Financial Information Authority (AIF) of Vatican City poses on March 7, 2017 at St Peter's square in Vatican. Vincenzo PINTO / AFP

Pope to visit Hiroshima on anti-nuclear weapon mission

Nov 18, 2019 - 11:55 AM

Pope Francis, 82, flies to Asia on November 19, where he will first visit Thailand and then Japan, including the two cities destroyed by devastating US nuclear attacks during the Second World War

POPE FRANCIS. Pope Francis (C) has a lunch with people on November 17, 2019, at the Paul VI audience hall in Vatican, to mark the World Day of the Poor. Photo by Vincenzo Pinto/AFP

The Vatican out of money? Heavens no, says Pope ally

Oct 22, 2019 - 10:45 PM

'To say that the Vatican is at danger of default is false,' says Honduran Cardinal Oscar Maradiaga, who heads a group of 6 cardinals that advise Pope Francis on economic reforms

Faithfuls listen to Pope Francis delivering a speech from the window of the apostolic palace overlooking St Peter's Square in The Vatican on April 22, 2019, during the Regina Coeli prayer. (Photo by Tiziana FABI / AFP)

Archbishop from Bohol appointed new Papal Nuncio to Spain

Oct 02, 2019 - 9:16 AM

(UPDATED) In a reversal of roles, the new envoy of the Holy See to Spain is a citizen of a former Spanish colony

VATICAN ENVOY. A native of Bohol, Archbishop Bernardito Cleopas Auza serves as the Vatican's representative in the United Nations. Photo by Devra Berkowitz/UN Photo

Pope Francis to visit Thailand, Japan in November

Sep 14, 2019 - 9:28 AM

Pope Francis will travel to Thailand from November 20-23, and then to Japan on November 26, the Vatican says

POPE FRANCIS. Pope Francis' and Father Pedro's Opeka arrives at the humanitarian association Akamasoa in Antananarivo, Madagascar, on September 8, 2019. Photo by Tiziana Fabi/AFP

Pope Francis kicks off Africa tour in violence-hit Mozambique

Sep 04, 2019 - 3:56 PM

The pope is expected to be welcomed by tens of thousands during his visit

BOARDING. Pope Francis boards a plane for a trip to Mozambique, Madagascar and Mauritius, at Rome's Fiumicino airport on September 4, 2019. Photo by Andreas Solaro/AFP

Pope Francis to visit poor of Mozambique, Madagascar, Mauritius

Sep 02, 2019 - 12:21 PM

The pope's decision to visit two of the most impoverished countries in the world is seen as an act of solidarity from a cleric who was a frequent presence in the shantytowns of Argentina

POPE FRANCIS. Pope Francis waves as he boards a plane upon his departure for a three-day trip to Romania, on May 31, 2019 at Rome's Fiumicino airport.  File photo by Alberto Pizzoli/AFP

Pope Francis to create 13 new cardinals in October

Sep 01, 2019 - 8:22 PM

The appointments come as the Argentine pontiff gradually shapes a less European college of cardinals

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. - Pope Francis has set aside three and a half days to convince Catholic bishops to tackle paedophilia in a bid to contain a scandal which hit an already beleaguered Church again in 2018, from Chile to Germany and the United States. (Photo by Vincenzo PINTO / POOL / AFP)

First bishop ordained in China under Vatican deal

Aug 28, 2019 - 3:10 PM

Under the terms of the deal agreed in September last year, both Beijing and the Vatican will now have a say in appointing Catholic bishops

Vatican opens burial chambers in hunt for princesses and missing teen

Jul 20, 2019 - 2:43 PM

(UPATED) The Vatican said the the ossuaries were found last week under the floor of the Pontifical Teutonic College after the shock discovery that the bones of the princesses had disappeared from two tombs in the Teutonic Cemetery

This photo taken and handout on July 11, 2019 by the Vatican Media shows the opening of one of two tombs within the Vatican's grounds in the Teutonic Cemetery on July 11, 2019, as part of a probe into the case of Emanuela Orlandi, a teenager who disappeared in 1983 in one of Italy's darkest mysteries. The Vatican is opening an internal probe into the case of Emanuela Orlandi, a teenager who disappeared in 1983 in one of Italy's darkest mysteries, and opened on July 11, 2019 two tombs within its grounds in the Teutonic Cemetery to see if it holds the girl's remains, after Orlandi's family's lawyer received an anonymous tip-off telling her to look inside the marble-topped grave. Handout / VATICAN MEDIA / AFP AFP

Pope Francis appoints new Vatican spokesman

Jul 18, 2019 - 8:51 PM

Matteo Bruni, who has worked in the Holy See Press Office since 2009 and coordinated the press on the pontiff's international trips since 2013, takes over from interim spokesman Alessandro Gisotti

POPE FRANCIS. Pope Francis (C) greets journalists on his flight from Rome to Havana on September 19, 2015. File photo by Tony Gentile/AFP

Missing teen mystery deepens as Vatican dig reveals empty graves

Jul 11, 2019 - 1:18 PM

(UPDATED) 'The last thing I expected was to find empty tombs,' says Emanuela Orlandi's brother Pietro, who has never stopped hoping to find his sister alive

Pietro Orlandi, the brother or Emanuela Orlandi, a teenager who disappeared in 1983 in one of Italy's darkest mysteries, poses Via della Conciliazione in Rome on July 10, 2019 with the Vatican's St. Peter's Basilica in background. The Vatican is opening an internal probe into the case of Emanuela Orlandi, a teenager who disappeared in 1983 in one of Italy's darkest mysteries, and said it will open on July 11, 2019 two tombs within its grounds in the Teutonic Cemetery to see if it holds the girl's remains, after Orlandi's family's lawyer received an anonymous tip-off telling her to look inside the marble-topped grave. Andreas SOLARO / AFP

Pope Francis tells migrant mass 'no one exempt' from helping

Jul 09, 2019 - 11:36 AM

The Pope says 'the weakest and most vulnerable must be helped...This is a tremendous responsibility, from which no one is exempt'

BLESSING. This photo taken and handout on July 8, 2019 by the Vatican Media shows Pope Francis blessing a child as he celebrates a mass for migrants on July 8, 2019 in the Vatican. Handout/Vatican Media/AFP

Vatican lifts envoy's immunity over sex assault claims – France

Jul 09, 2019 - 12:11 AM

Luigi Ventura, 74, faces 4 complaints of sexual abuse – including that he molested a junior official at the Paris town hall

VATICAN CITY. St Peter's Basilica reflects in a puddle of Via della Conciliazione on May 9, 2018 in Rome. File photo by Tiziana Fabi/AFP

Filipina nun declared venerable, moves closer to sainthood

Jul 06, 2019 - 9:47 PM

Mother Francisca del Espiritu Santo is the founder of the Congregation of the Dominican Sisters of Saint Catherine of Siena

VENERABLE. Servant of God Mother Francisca de Fuentes. From the Mother Francisca website

Putin meets pope, 'welcoming' populist gov't during Italy trip

Jul 04, 2019 - 3:50 PM

(UPDATED) Rome's historic center is on security lockdown for the visit with 50 streets blocked to traffic and Italian media reporting that mobile phone signals could be scrambled

MEET AGAIN. File photo of Pope Francis (left) greeting Russian President Vladimir Putin during a private audience at the Vatican on June 10, 2015. Photo by Gregorio Borgia/pool/AFP pool

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

Australia's Cardinal Pell launches appeal against child sex conviction

Jun 05, 2019 - 10:31 AM

Cardinal George Pell arrives in court under heavy guard for the start of his appeal against his conviction for sex abuse

Vatican finance chief Cardinal George Pell (C) arrives under heavy police protection for a hearing at the Melbourne Magistrates Court in Melbourne on July 26, 2017. Pell, a top advisor to Pope Francis, denied all charges of historical sexual abuse on July 26 at his first appearance in an Australian court over the allegations. / AFP PHOTO / Mal Fairclough

Pope Francis to 'go beyond fear' in Romania

May 31, 2019 - 3:23 PM

During the 3-day trip to Romania, Pope Francis is expected to touch on issues fuelling nationalism, such as poverty, as well as inter-religious relations

POPE FRANCIS. Pope Francis waves as he boards a plane upon his departure for a three-day trip to Romania, on May 31, 2019 at Rome's Fiumicino airport . Photo by Alberto Pizzoli/ AFP

Pope Francis condemns abortion as use of 'paid killer'

May 25, 2019 - 10:47 PM

'Is it lawful to eliminate a human life to resolve a problem? It is lawful to hire a paid killer to resolve a problem,' says the Pope

FORGIVENESS. Pope Francis leads the Angelus at the Drum Crescent, Knock, County Mayo on August 26, 2018, on the second day of his visit to Ireland to attend the 2018 World Meeting of Families. Photo by Tiziani 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

U.S. Catholic dioceses announce abuse 'compensation program'

May 15, 2019 - 8:37 AM

(UPDATED) 6 Catholic dioceses in California launch a 'compensation program as an alternative to court proceedings for minors sexually abused by clergy

SUED. This file photo taken on April 21, 2019 shows worshipers attending the Pope's Easter Sunday mass outside St Peter's basilica on St. Peter's square in the Vatican. Photo by Vincenzo Pinto/AFP

U.S. Catholic abuse victims sue to open Vatican archives

May 14, 2019 - 12:03 PM

The group wants Vatican to release 'all identities of thousands of offenders known exlusively and held in strict secrecy'

Faithfuls listen to Pope Francis delivering a speech from the window of the apostolic palace overlooking St Peter's Square in The Vatican on April 22, 2019, during the Regina Coeli prayer. (Photo by Tiziana FABI / AFP)

Ex-pope Benedict blames Church sex abuse crisis on 1960s sexual revolution

Apr 12, 2019 - 12:28 PM

The pope emeritus, who retired in 2013, blames the crises rocking the Roman Catholic Church globally with the fight for an 'all-out sexual freedom, one which no longer admitted any norms'

ROME - APRIL 2013: Pope Benedict XVI stepping down from his Popemobile after a procession into Easter Sunday Mass, in a crowded St Peter's Square, Vatican City - 24th April 2011 - Image

Vatican says to host South Sudan warring rivals

Apr 09, 2019 - 7:54 PM

The arch-rivals will attend 'an occasion for encounter and reconciliation, in a spirit of respect and trust,' the Vatican says in a statement

VATICAN RETREAT. This combination of pictures created on June 19, 2018 shows (L) South Sudan's President Salva Kiir on January 29, 2018 and (R) South Sudan's rebel leader Riek Machar on January 26, 2016. File photos by Simon Maina and Isaac Kasamani/AFP

Pope issues new child abuse legislation for Vatican City

Mar 30, 2019 - 9:49 AM

Anyone convicted of abuse must be 'removed from office' under the new legislation

JUSTICE. Pope Francis vows to never again ignore allegations of abuse. File photo by Filippo Monteforte/AFP

Pope resisted ring-kissing for fear of spreading germs

Mar 29, 2019 - 12:45 PM

The Vatican says Pope Francis tries to stop people kissing his ring because he fears it could spread germs. This is in response to a viral video showing the Argentinian repeatedly withdrawing his hand from worshippers.

VIVA IL PAPA. Pope Francis pays homage to 85-year-old Sr. Maria Concetta Esu giving her a Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice award during his weekly general audience, in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican, on March 27, 2019. Photo by Vincenzo Pinto/AFP

Anger in Spain, eyerolls in Mexico over conquest row

Mar 27, 2019 - 11:30 AM

Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador tears open a 500-year-old wound when he said he had sent letters to the king of Spain and the pope urging them to apologize for the conquest of the Americas

Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador speaks during his daily morning press conference at the National Palace in Mexico City on March 26, 2019. The 500-year-old wounds of the Spanish conquest have been ripped open afresh with Mexico's president urging Spain and the Vatican to apologise for their "abuses" -- a request Madrid said it "firmly rejects". A folksy populist, he pulls no punches in going after elites and has sought to cast himself as a champion of indigenous peoples. Pedro PARDO / AFP

Female reporters quit over Vatican call for 'obedience'

Mar 27, 2019 - 7:27 AM

'We are throwing in the towel because we feel surrounded by a climate of distrust and progressive de-legitimisation," says Woman Church World founder Lucetta Scaraffia

A woman reads L'Osservatore Romano newspaper before the start of the canonisation mass of Popes John XXIII and John Paul II on St Peter's at the Vatican on April 27, 2014. Catholics from around the world gathered in Rome on Sunday for a mass presided by Pope Francis to confer sainthood on John Paul II and John XXIII -- two influential popes who helped shape 20th century history. AFP PHOTO / GIUSEPPE CACACE GIUSEPPE CACACE / AFP

Pope Francis accepts abuse resignation of Chile cardinal Ezzati – Vatican

Mar 23, 2019 - 10:27 PM

Ricardo Ezzati is the 7th senior Chilean church official to resign over a scandal which Pope Francis insists must be remedied

Convicted French cardinal expected to resign at meeting with pope

Mar 18, 2019 - 10:29 AM

(UPDATED) The Argentine pontiff could take several weeks to decide whether to accept the resignation

CHURCH CRISIS. This handout picture released by the Vatican press office on May 20, shows Pope Francis shaking hands with Cardinal Philippe Barbarin. Hand out/ Osservatore Romano/ AFP

Convicted French cardinal Barbarin to meet Pope Francis

Mar 14, 2019 - 11:32 PM

Pope Francis will grant the 68-year-old archbishop of Lyon a private audience at 10 am Monday, March 18

MEETING POPE FRANCIS. This photo taken on April 26, 2017 at St Peter's square in the Vatican shows Pope Francis (R) talking to Lyon's cardinal Philippe Barbarin at the end of a weekly general audience. File photo by Vincenzo Pinto/AFP