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Meeting Pope Francis Is a Sign of the Early Church, Seminarian Says (1540)

Deacon Deacon Bernard Poggi, who is studying at the seminary of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem, said Pope Francis' visit to the Holy Land is also a sign of hope.

05/26/2014 Comment
Daniel Ibáñez/CNA

Pope Francis meets with seminarians from the Pontifical Roman universities on May 12.

– Daniel Ibáñez/CNA

JERUSALEM — Deacon Bernard Poggi, who was among the priests and religious slated to meet with Pope Francis in Jerusalem Monday, stated that seeing the Successor of Peter reminds him of the first apostles.

“To have the Successor of Peter in this land where Peter was, and to have so many priests, religious and seminarians” present with him, “is a reminder of the first Church,” Deacon Poggi told CNA May 26.

It brings hope that the Church “continues, like the promise of Christ: that the gates of hell will not prevail against it.”

Originally from San Francisco, Deacon Poggi moved to Jerusalem five years ago in order to join the seminary of the Latin Patriarchate and is among the priests and...READ MORE

Filed under catholic faith, christian unity, ecumenical patriarch bartholomew i, greek orthodox church, holy land, jerusalem, jesus christ, latin patriarchate, pope francis

Pope Francis Lauds Fraternal Dialogue With Muslims, Jews (1469)

In his meeting with Holy Land Muslim leaders, the Holy Father called attention to the example of Abraham, who is an important figure in Judaism, Christianity and Islam.

05/26/2014 Comment

Pope Francis smiles as he meets with Muhammad Ahmad Hussein, the grand mufti of Jerusalem, and other Muslim leaders on May 26.

– ctv.va

JERUSALEM — Pope Francis spent a large part of the third day of his pilgrimage to the Holy Land meeting with Muslim and Jewish leaders, praising the shared commitment to dialogue.

“We are experiencing a fraternal dialogue and exchange which are able to restore us and offer us new strength to confront the common challenges before us,” the Pope told Muhammad Ahmad Hussein, grand mufti of Jerusalem, on May 26.

He met with the Muslim leader as well as the Present of the Supreme Muslim Council and others and others Monday morning at the Dome of the Rock.

The Holy Father took the opportunity to reflect on the figure of Abraham, “who lived as a pilgrim in these lands,” and serves as an...READ MORE

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Pope Prays at Holocaust Memorial, Western Wall (1878)

On the last day of his Holy Land pilgrimage, Pope Francis stopped to pray at two sacred sites in Jerusalem.

05/26/2014 Comments (1)

Two young students who live in Israel, Eva Kolodkina and Hoang Huy Nguyen, help Pope Francis lay a wreath May 26 at Israel’s Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial.

– yadvashem.org

JERUSALEM — On the last day of his Holy Land pilgrimage, Pope Francis stopped to pray at two sacred sites in Jerusalem.

The Holy Father visited the Western Wall in Jerusalem on the morning of May 26, pausing to pray at the site and leaving the Our Father in Spanish tucked into one of the cracks. The Western Wall is a sacred place for Jews, the only remains of the Jewish people’s Second Temple in Jerusalem.

Deviating from his planned itinerary, he also stopped to visit a memorial to Israeli victims of terrorism.

Later, at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial, Pope Francis met with survivors of the Holocaust. As a flame was lit, Pope Francis prayed the following prayer:

(Full text of the...READ MORE

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Christian Pastor Forcibly Returned to Iranian Prison (2027)

Saeed Abedini, who converted to Christianity from Islam, became a U.S. citizen in 2010.

05/26/2014 Comments (4)
CNA/American Center for Law and Justice

Pastor Saeed Abedini with his family

– CNA/American Center for Law and Justice

WASHINGTON — After being treated for two months in a hospital for injuries suffered from beatings during his imprisonment, Saeed Abedini — a Christian pastor and U.S. citizen — is being returned to Iran’s Rajai Shahr Prison.

“This is an extremely disappointing development — one that breaks my heart,” said Abedini's wife, Naghmeh, in a May 20 statement. “Our family is deeply saddened, and we continue to pray for Saeed — for his safety and his release.”

“We are very grateful that so many people around the world continue to pray for Saeed,” she added.

Pastor Abedini was arrested in Iran in September 2012. The Iranian government has charged him with compromising national security. However,...READ MORE

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U.S. Government Asked to Defend Global Religious Freedom (1055)

Princeton professor Robert George told a congressional panel that ‘we need our government to pay attention to the violations and abuses going on abroad.’

05/26/2014 Comments (1)
Brother Pier Giorgio Dengler, OP, Dominican Province of St. Joseph

Princeton professor Robert George

– Brother Pier Giorgio Dengler, OP, Dominican Province of St. Joseph

WASHINGTON — The United States should actively promote religious liberty, a critical right that forms a foundation for a healthy society, the head of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom told members of Congress.

This hearing is timely and important,” said Robert George, who is the chairman of the religious-freedom commission and a professor at Princeton University. “Religious freedom remains under serious assault across much of the world.”

During a May 22 hearing before the House congressional panel overseeing global human-rights issues, George explained that this “pivotal human right is central to U.S. history, affirmed by international treaties and obligations and a...READ MORE

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What the Bible Really Says on Remarriage, Marvel's Avengers Unite for Catholic Writer and More! (3846)

The Best in Catholic Blogging

05/26/2014 Comments (2)

Follow Divorce, Remarriage & Adultery: What the Bible Really Says by Joe Heschemeyer to read more.

Divorce, Remarriage & Adultery: What the Bible Really Says by Joe Heschemeyer - BigPulpit.com

Marvel’s Avengers “Assemble” for Catholic Writer – Unam Sanctam Catholicam

Miracles Do Happen – Lisa Shefferly-Gillay, Catholic Stand

What’s Keeping St. John XXIII from Being Righteous Among the Nations - Eduardo Eurnekian and Baruch Tenembaum, Aleteia

Nilly Willy Catholics – J. Q. Tomanek, Ignitum Today

Scouting’s Next Battleground - Anne Hendershott, The Catholic World Report

Except Us – Don. R. McClarey JD, The American Catholic

Atheism Is a Religion, Because it Requires Faith & Belief – Quartermaster of the Barque

U. S. Federal Government to Jesuit University: You Are Not Catholic –...READ MORE

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Pope and Patriarch at Prayer Marks Historic Chapter in Ecumenism (10372)

Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi said the joint prayer at the Holy Sepulchre was a historic step forward to healing a Catholic-Orthodox split almost 1,000 years old.

05/25/2014 Comments (8)

Pope Francis and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I stand together at the beginning of the May 25 ecumenical celebration at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.

– CTV.va

JERUSALEM — Pope Francis and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, the successors to the apostles Peter and Andrew, made history in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre today by holding a prayer service together in a place where Christians from different churches have previously prayed only separately.

During the evening prayer service in Jerusalem, both Pope and Patriarch knelt beside each other to pray and also light candles at the tomb where Jesus Christ was buried after his crucifixion in 34 A.D. and rose from the dead on the third day. Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi told journalists at a late evening press conference that their public mutual prayer was completely new and another...READ MORE

Filed under bartholomew i, holy land, patriarch of constantinople, pope francis

Christ’s Resurrection Unites Us, Pope Proclaims at Ecumenical Celebration (1874)

At the Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre, the Holy Father joined with Orthodox Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew in affirming a common commitment to Christian unity.

05/25/2014 Comment
Vatican Radio/CTV

Pope Francis and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew kneel together in prayer at the Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem on May 25.

– Vatican Radio/CTV

JERUSALEM — At an ecumenical celebration in Jerusalem during his visit to the region, Pope Francis told interdenominational Christians that the risen Christ unites them all in a message of hope for the world.

“Each of us, everyone baptized in Christ, has spiritually risen from this tomb, for in baptism, all of us truly became members of the body of the One who is the firstborn of all creation,” Pope Francis said.  

The Pope encouraged those gathered to “pause in reverent silence before this empty tomb in order to rediscover the grandeur of our Christian vocation,” since “we are men and women of [the] Resurrection and not of death.”  

“Let us not allow ourselves to be robbed of the basis...READ MORE

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