Pope Francis meets with President of Switzerland

During an audience in the Apostolic Palace on Monday, Pope Francis addressed the President of the Swiss Confederation, Alain Berset. Pope Francis highlighted the loyalty of the Swiss Guards, who surround him so professionally. The information came in a communiqué released by the Holy See Press Office. The Pope also expressed his hope for an ever-growing collaboration on numerous interests shared by the Catholic Church and Switzerland. Reference was then made to the active commitment on both sides at European and International levels, in achieving a more fraternal society, in…

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Nigeria: Four kidnapped Catholic Priests regain freedom

The four Catholic priests who were kidnapped on Tuesday, Nov. 6 by unidentified gunmen have regained their freedom. The priests were rescued by a joint police team from Delta and Edo States as the abductors fled when they noticed that the rescue team was closing in on them. According to Muhammad Mustafa, the Police Commissioner of Delta state, the victims were rescued on Friday evening and several suspects had been arrested. It was learnt that the priests had been taken to Benin, the Edo State capital for treatment.

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Nigeria: Gunmen kidnap four Catholic Priests In Delta state

Unidentified gunmen on Tuesday, November 6, abducted four Catholic priests between Agbor and Umutu in Ukwani Local Government Area of Delta State, Nigeria. The priests were said to be returning from their annual class meeting that took place in Warri on Monday and Tuesday to mark their 10th priestly ordination. They were on their way to the seminary of All Saints, Uhiele-Ekpoma, to celebrate with the seminary community when the gunmen waylaid them and took four of them away. The abducted priests include Rev. Fr. Victor Adigboluja of Ijebu Ode…

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Pope Francis mourns victims of attack on Coptic Christians in Egypt

Pope Francis expressed sorrow for the victims of an attack on Coptic Christians in Egypt in his Angelus address Sunday. Islamic militants ambushed a bus carrying Coptic Christian pilgrims to a desert monastery south of Cairo on Friday, killing seven and leaving 19 injured. “I pray for the victims, pilgrims killed just because they are Christians, and I ask Holy Mary to console their families and the whole community,” Pope Francis said Nov. 4. The Coptic Orthodox Church held funerals on Saturday for six of the victims, who were killed…

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Pope on All Saints’ Day: Live for heaven, not the world

If a Christian wants to reach heaven, he or she should ask themselves if they are living for the pleasures of the world, or if they are striving after holiness with all their strength, Pope Francis said on the feast of All Saints. “Let us ask ourselves what side we are on: that of heaven or that of the earth? Do we live for the Lord or for ourselves, for eternal happiness or for some fulfillment now?” the pope said Nov. 1. “Let us ask ourselves: do we really want…

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Pope Francis prays for victims of synagogue shooting

Pope Francis has paid tribute to the victims of the synagogue massacre in Pittsburgh and spoke of his closeness to the Jewish community there in an address at the Vatican on Sunday morning. In his Angelus address, he said: “May the Most High welcome the dead in His peace, comfort their families and support the wounded.” The Pope also condemned the religiously motivated attack and asked that the Lord “extinguish the outbreaks of hatred that develops in our societies”. Eleven people died when shooting suspect Robert Bowers opened fire at…

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Number of Americans who say they are witches is on the rise

The number of Americans who claim to be witches has increased dramatically over the past 30 years. An estimated 1 to 1.5 million people say they practice Wicca or paganism, a rise from an estimated 8,000 Wiccans in 1990, and 340,000 in 2008. In 2014, a Pew Research Center survey found about 0.4 percent of Americans identify themselves Pagan or Wiccan, a significant increase over prior years. If accurate, the Pew data would suggest that there are more self-identified “witches” in the United States than members of some mainline Protestant…

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Priest who was witness in bishop rape case found dead

A Catholic priest considered a prime witness against an Indian bishop accused of rape has been found dead, with his family suspecting foul play. However, local medical staff said he had a series of health problems. Fr Kuriakose Kattuthara, 67, was found dead inside his room in Jalandhar on October 22, a week after Bishop Franco Mulakkal of Jalandhar was granted bail by the state court in Kerala and went back to his diocese. Ucanews.com reported Fr Kattuthara gave testimony against Bishop Mulakkal, who has been accused of raping a…

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Bishop accused of rape arrested in India

Bishop Franco Mulakkal of Jullundur was arrested by Kerala police Friday over allegations that he raped a nun repeatedly over the course of two years. The bishop denies the accusations. The Sept. 21 arrest was made in Kochi after three days of interrogation. The bishop will be brought to court Saturday, the BBC reports. Mulakkal, 54, wrote to the Vatican last week asking to be relieved of administration of his diocese; his request was granted, and Bishop Agnelo Gracias, an Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus of Bombay, was appointed apostolic administrator of Jullundur…

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Nigeria: Kidnapped priest dies four days after escaping from abductors

On Wednesday September 19, a Catholic priest that was kidnapped died just four days after he escaped from his abductors. Rev. Fr. Dr Louis Odudu, the Chaplain of the Seat of Wisdom Catholic Chaplaincy of the Petroleum Training Institute (PTI), Effurun, Delta State, was kidnapped last week Friday and he escaped on Saturday. The priest was said to have been pronounced dead at a private hospital in Warri, hours after he reportedly complained of pains and demanded to be taken to a hospital . A source said , “He was…

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