How the Church in Thailand fights trafficking, violence against women

Bangkok, Thailand, Nov 28, 2014 / 04:39 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The Church in Thailand observed the Nov. 25 celebration of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women with a seminar helping form networks to end trafficking and other forms of sex-based violence in the country. The Thai bishops held the seminar Nov. 22 at Xavier Hall in Bangkok, which drew more than 200 participants, including women religious, conscrated laywomen, pastoral workers, teachers, and … [Read more...]

Pope authorizes plenary indulgence for Year of Consecrated Life

Vatican City, Nov 28, 2014 / 03:09 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- On the occasion of the Year of Consecrated Life that begins this weekend, Pope Francis has allowed the faithful to receive plenary indulgences, under the normal conditions. “The Holy Father, on the occasion of the Year of Consecrated Life, will concede plenary indulgences, with the customary conditions, to all members of the institutes of consecrated life and other truly repentant faithful moved by a spirit of charity,” a … [Read more...]

Young Syrian refugee tells Pope, ‘pray for us and pray for peace’

Istanbul, Turkey, Nov 28, 2014 / 11:39 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Currently a living as a refugee at a Salesian school in Istanbul, 14-year-old Sarah will give Pope Francis a picture that she painted,  and  says that she will ask him to pray for world peace. “My name is Sarah, and I made this picture in the name of the school to give it to the Pope. This is my picture with Jesus and Don Bosco, and here we have the glow of Don Bosco and the Sun of Jesus,” Sarah told CNA Nov. … [Read more...]

For Pope Francis, human dignity at core of religious dialogue

Istanbul, Turkey, Nov 28, 2014 / 09:18 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Dialogue between religious leaders and the “shared recognition of the sanctity of each human life” in bringing aid to the suffering were at the core of Pope Francis' Nov. 28 address to Turkey's Department for Religious Affairs, delivered on the first day of his three-day Apostolic Journey to Turkey. “Without this openness to encounter and dialogue, a papal visit would not fully correspond to its … [Read more...]

Pope to Turkish authorities: religious freedom a key factor for peace

Vatican City, Nov 28, 2014 / 07:21 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis spoke to Turkish authorities on Friday of the need to create a lasting peace – one based on a fraternal solidarity which respects human dignity and man’s essential right to religious freedom. “Fanaticism and fundamentalism, as well as irrational fears which foster misunderstanding and discrimination, need to be countered by the solidarity of all believers,” the Pope told Turkish authorities on Nov. … [Read more...]

A new path for unity – Pope and Patriarch to face world challenges together

Istanbul, Turkey, Nov 28, 2014 / 05:27 am (CNA/EWTN News).- A common declaration of Pope Francis and Patriarch Bartholomew on the issues of ecology and poverty would be natural is foreseeable for the future, a theological advisor of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Costantinople told CNA Nov. 28. “Today, there is no excuse for indifference or inaction. A joint response between Pope Francis and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew can prove both powerful and permanent,” said Fr. John … [Read more...]

Waiting for the Pope: Istanbul refugee center prepares to welcome Francis

Istanbul, Turkey, Nov 28, 2014 / 05:16 am (CNA/EWTN News).- People at the refugee center that Pope Francis will visit this coming Sunday are learning to seek a future, the director of the center told CNA Nov. 27. “Pope Francis will come here because we are not a school, we are a refugee center, we are a center of learning that kids can use for the future. And they are searching for the future,” Fr. Andrés Calleja Ruiz emphasized. A Salesian hailing from Madrid, Fr. … [Read more...]