Vatican: Scalfari Interview Misses Details, Conflates Facts

Saturday, October 05, 2013 12:37 PM Comments (35)

In a remarkable development concerning Pope Francis’ sensational interview with the Italian newspaper La Repubblica published this week, the interviewer has admitted to neither recording nor even taking notes of the exchange.

Eugenio Scalfari has said he did show the text to the Holy Father for approval, but it isn’t clear how closely the Pope read it.

In a statement, the Vatican has stressed that the text was an “after-the-fact reconstruction” and so “run[s] the risk of either missing some key details or conflating various moments or events recounted during the oral interview.”

It has nevertheless attested to the overall "trustworthiness" of the interview.

The revelation comes...READ MORE

Filed under interview, la repubblica, pope francis

Pope: Franciscan Peace is Not Something Saccharine

Friday, October 04, 2013 11:10 AM Comments (1)

Pope Francis in Assisi on Oct. 4 2013, the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi.


“Franciscan peace is not something saccharine. Hardly! That is not the real Saint Francis!,” Pope Francis said in his homily in the Upper Basilica of St. Francis in Assisi this morning.

Nor, he added, is Franciscan peace “a kind of pantheistic harmony with forces of the cosmos.”

“It is not Franciscan,” he said, “but a notion that some people have invented! The peace of Saint Francis is the peace of Christ, and it is found by those who "take up" their "yoke", namely, Christ’s commandment: Love one another as I have loved you (cf. Jn 13:34; 15:12). This yoke cannot be borne with arrogance, presumption or pride, but only with meekness and humbleness of heart.”

The full text of the Holy...READ MORE

Filed under assisi, peace, pope francis

Cardinals Agree on Radical Changes to Curia Governance

Thursday, October 03, 2013 10:06 AM Comments (7)

Fr. Federico Lombardi briefing journalists at the Vatican.

– EP

Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi confirmed today that the members of the council of cardinals do not intend to update “with retouches and marginal modifications” the apostolic constitution Pastor Bonus, John Paul II’s 1988 instruction on governance of the Roman Curia.

Instead, they wish to introduce “a new constitution with significant new aspects,” ones which aim to lead away from a centralized form of governance.

Father Lombardi made the announcement during his recap of yesterday afternoon’s and this morning’s sessions of the cardinals meeting, convened to discuss Church governance and Curial reform.

“It will be necessary to wait a reasonable amount of time following...READ MORE

Filed under council of cardinals, pope francis, roman curia, vatican

Pope Francis Gives New Interview

Tuesday, October 01, 2013 8:40 AM Comments (34)

Pope Francis has given a 4,500-word interview to the atheist founder of the Italian newspaper La Repubblica, Eugenio Scalfari.

The interview took place at the Pope's request last Tuesday, Sept. 24, in the Domus Sanctae Marthae residence, where the Holy Father is living. The Pope recently wrote a letter to Scalfari, answering three questions he put to him on the faith.

Francis also gave a longer interview to the Jesuit publication La Civilta Cattolica at the end of August.

Together with Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI's frank letter to Italian atheist Piergiorgio Odifreddi, each is an attempt to open the Church up to dialogue with the world and nonbelievers, in accordance with the...READ MORE

Filed under interview, pope francis

Confirmed: April 27 for Canonizations of Popes John XXIII and John Paul II

Monday, September 30, 2013 4:49 AM Comments (2)

Blessed Popes John XXIII and John Paul II will be canonized on April 27th 2014, Divine Mercy Sunday, the Vatican confirmed this morning.

The news was announced in the following statement:


This morning, at 10 o'clock in the Consistory Hall of the Vatican Apostolic Palace, during the celebration of mid-morning prayer, the Holy Father Francis held the Ordinary Public Consistory for the Canonization of Blesseds:

- John XXIII, Pope

- John Paul II, Pope.

During the Consistory, the Pope decreed that the Blesseds John XXIII and John Paul II will be enrolled among the saints April 27,...READ MORE

Filed under canonization, divine mercy, john paul ii, john xxiii

Pope's Strong Words in Defense of the Unborn

Friday, September 20, 2013 5:40 PM Comments (46)

Pope Francis addressing the International Federation of Catholic Medical Associations and Catholic gynaecologists, 20 September 2013.

Pope Francis today gave his most spirited and explicit defense of the unborn and society's most vulnerable since his election.

The Holy Father was addressing the International Federation of Catholic Medical Associations and Catholic gynaecologists, currently attending a conference in Rome. 

Below is my translation of Pope Francis' address, not the official English translation which is yet to be published in full:

"I apologize for the delay, because today ... this is a morning too complicated for audiences ... I apologize.

1 . The first point that I would like to share with you is this: we are witnessing today a paradoxical situation concerning the medical profession. On the...READ MORE

Filed under abortion, elderly, gynecology, medicine, pope francis, pro-life, unborn

Applying Pope's Syria Efforts to Defend the Unborn and Marriage

Friday, September 13, 2013 9:29 AM Comments (30)
Edward Pentin

Pope Francis has won much praise for his tireless efforts to bring peace to Syria.

– Edward Pentin

The Holy Father has, to borrow a political term, “momentum”.

His impressive peace-making efforts concerning Syria have captured much of the world’s attention and rightfully earned him and the Holy See praise.

Last Saturday’s vigil, which united millions around the world, followed an extraordinary day of praying and fasting for a peaceful resolution to the conflict.

Pope Francis' efforts, which included a detailed briefing for diplomats on how to bring peace to the country, even struck a chord with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

But given the welcome attention the Pope has received over Syria, shouldn’t the Church also consider giving equal, if not more, weight to a place where...READ MORE

Filed under abortion, holy see, marriage, pope francis, same sex marriage, syria, unborn

Pope: In the Silence of the Cross, Uproar of Weapons Ceases

Full text of Pope Francis' homily at the Vigil of Prayer and Fasting in Saint Peter's Square, Saturday 7 September 2013.

Saturday, September 07, 2013 4:45 PM Comments (30)


“And God saw that it was good” (Gen 1:12, 18, 21, 25). The biblical account of the beginning of the history of the world and of humanity speaks to us of a God who looks at creation, in a sense contemplating it, and declares: “It is good”. This allows us to enter into God’s heart and, precisely from within him, to receive his message.

We can ask ourselves: what does this message mean? What does it say to me, to you, to all of us?

1. It says to us simply that this, our world, in the heart and mind of God, is the “house of harmony and peace”, and that it is the space in which everyone is able to find their proper place and feel “at home”, because it is “good”. All of creation...READ MORE

Filed under middle east, peace, pope francis, syria

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About Edward Pentin

Edward Pentin
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Edward Pentin began reporting on the Pope and the Vatican with Vatican Radio before moving on to become the Rome correspondent for the National Catholic Register. He has also reported on the Holy See and the Catholic Church for a number of other publications including Newsweek, Newsmax, Zenit, The Catholic Herald, and The Holy Land Review, a Franciscan publication specializing in the Church and the Middle East. Follow on Twitter @edwardpentin