'Pope Francis'

Laudato Si Posters

Posted on 17. Jun, 2017 by .


In response to the June 2017 update regarding the Laudato Si 2nd anniversary, Leo Sprietsma OFM provided us with a few posters of the ‘original Laudato Si” that he has recently designed.



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‘Pope Francis’ Laundry’ opens in Rome

Posted on 30. Apr, 2017 by .


taken from radiovaticana.va –

Lavanderia-2-690x450The first washing machines and tumble dryers for the homeless in Rome whirred into action on Monday as ‘Pope Francis’ Laundry’ opened its doors to provide a much needed service.

One of the many difficulties for those who live on the streets is to be able to wash, dry and iron their clothes and blankets, and the Vatican-sponsored laundry is a response to Pope Francis’s invitation to give concrete signs of solidarity to our brothers and sisters in need.

A communiqué released by the Apostolic Almoner quotes from the Pope’s Apostolic Letter, Misericordia et misera, at the conclusion of the Jubilee Year of Mercy: “The desire for closeness to Christ requires us to draw near to our brothers and sisters, for nothing is more pleasing to the Father than a true sign of mercy. By its very nature, mercy becomes visible and tangible in specific acts.”

So, Papal Almoner, Archbishop Konrad Krajewski noted: “Here is a concrete sign wanted by the office of Papal Charities: a place and a service to give concrete form to charity to restore dignity to so many people who are our brothers and sisters and who are called, with us, to build a city we can trust”.

Pope Francis’ Office of Papal Charities has already set up showers, a barber shop, a dormitory, a healthcare clinic and a pharmacy for the poor in the eternal city. What was missing, until now, was a laundry service, an urgent need indeed as Krajewski explained: “One of the greatest difficulties for those who live on the streets, along with that of finding food, a place to spend the night and public baths, is to wash and dry the clothes they wear, in many cases the only ones they own”.

The laundry room is located at the “People of Peace Center” run by the Sant’Egidio Community at the old hospital complex of San Gallicano, in the central Trastevere area of Rome.

The press release offers the information that the laundry boasts six, latest generation washers and six dryers along with several irons donated by the Whirlpool Corporation.

Other commercial detergent producers ensure the full and free supply of soap powder and fabric softener.


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Pope Francis TED Talk: Why the only future worth building includes everyone

Posted on 30. Apr, 2017 by .


A single individual is enough for hope to exist, and that individual can be you, says His Holiness Pope Francis in this searing TED Talk delivered directly from Vatican City. In a hopeful message to people of all faiths, to those who have power as well as those who don’t, the spiritual leader provides illuminating commentary on the world as we currently find it and calls for equality, solidarity and tenderness to prevail. “Let us help each other, all together, to remember that the ‘other’ is not a statistic, or a number,” he says. “We all need each other.”

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Read: Pope Francis’ new interview on the struggles of migrants and refugees

Posted on 30. Apr, 2017 by .


Originally published in an Italian journal, Pope Francis discussed the plight of refugees and the creation of a new Vatican department to guide the church’s response to this humanitarian crisis.

This interview with Pope Francis was published today in the Italian journal Libertàcivili. The conversation, which took place on March 28, focuses on the plight of refugees and the creation of a new Vatican department to guide the church’s response to this humanitarian crisis.

Your Holiness, on July 8, 2013, you made this statement while visiting Lampedusa: “I had to come here to pray,” you said, “to make a gesture of closeness but also to reawaken our consciences.” On April 16, 2016, you repeated this statement in Lesbos, adding your prayers to those of Archbishop Ieronymos of Athens and Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople. How can ecumenical and interreligious dialogue—not only among the three religions of the children of Abraham but also with all the others—contribute to a correct understanding of the problem of migration, with its burden of human suffering, as we look for possible solutions to welcoming those who arrive in Europe?

The visit to Lesbos and the prayers with Archbishop Ieronymos and Patriarch Bartholomew are a sharing of brotherhood, of closeness to the cries of the many innocents who ask only for a chance to save their own lives. Sharing in brotherhood with other religions appeals to our consciences not to turn our backs on the hopes and calls for help of our brothers and sisters in need.

Migration, if handled with humanity, is an opportunity for everyone to meet and grow. We cannot lose our sense of fraternal responsibility. The defense of human beings knows no barriers: We are all united in wanting to ensure a dignified life for every man, woman and child who is forced to abandon his or her own land. There is no difference of creed that can outweigh this wish—in fact, quite the contrary.

It is precisely in these contexts that we can be brothers working toward good—the same good—every day. If the same unity were embraced by those who govern different countries, as well, then maybe we could take some more concrete, global steps in support of migrants and refugees.

The island of Lesbos, like Lampedusa, shows the world the faces of innocent people who flee from wars, violence and persecution. Men, women and children traveling alone arrive tired, exhausted, hoping to save their own lives with dramatic journeys via land and, unfortunately, also via sea.

In Europe and around the world we are living through a critical moment in the management of migration policies. Those in power must be both far-sighted and coherent in watchful respect for fundamental human rights, as well as trying to end to the causes of forced migration which oblige civilians to flee.

click here to keep reading

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Pope Francis is leading the Catholic Church Against Anti-migrant Populism

Posted on 25. Apr, 2017 by .


Taken from washingtonpost.com –

As politicians around the world including President Trump take an increasingly hard line on immigration, a powerful force is rallying to the side of migrants: the Roman Catholic Church led by Pope Francis.

Catholic cardinals, bishops and priests are emerging as some of the most influential opponents of immigration crackdowns backed by right-wing populists in the United States and Europe. The moves come as Francis, who has put migrants at the top of his agenda, appears to be leading by example, emphasizing his support for their rights in sermons, speeches and deeds.

The pro-migrant drive risks dividing Catholics — many of whom in the United States voted for Trump. Some observers say it is also inserting the church into politics in a manner recalling the heady days of Pope John Paul II, who stared down communism and declared his opposition to the 1991 Persian Gulf War. The Vatican is standing in open opposition to politicians like Trump not just on immigration but also on other issues, including climate-change policy.

But the focal point is clearly migrant rights.

Eritrean migrants sit on a Proactiva Open Arms rescue boat in the Mediterranean Sea, about 56 miles north of Sabratha, Libya, on April 6, 2017. (Bernat Armangue/AP)

In the United States, individual bishops, especially those appointed by Francis, have sharply criticized Trump’s migrant policies since his election. They include Newark Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, who last month co-led a rally in support of a Mexican man fighting deportation. Tobin has decried Trump’s executive orders on immigration, calling them the “opposite of what it means to be an American.”

In Los Angeles, Archbishop José H. Gomez, the first Mexican American vice president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, which leads the U.S. church, described migrant rights as the bishops’ most important issue. He has delivered blistering critiques of Trump’s policies, and instructed his clerics to distribute cards in English, Spanish, Korean and Vietnamese informing migrants of their rights in 300 parishes.

Chicago Cardinal Blase J. Cupich, one of Francis’s closest allies in the U.S. church, has issued orders that if federal immigration authorities should attempt to enter churches without a warrant in search of migrants, priests should turn them away and call the archdiocese’s lawyers. Catholic school principals were given the same instructions by the archdiocese, which Cupich said was an attempt to respond in a way that was firm “but not extreme.”

He said Francis has helped bishops shape their response.

read more here

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