22 International News

posted Jan 16, 2019, 7:49 AM by Neil D'Souza   [ updated Jan 16, 2019, 7:49 AM ]

VATICAN
Pope Francis baptises 27 newborns

In the solemn ambience of the Sistine Chapel, Pope Francis led the Mass on the Feast of the Baptism of Jesus, during which he baptised 27 newborns - 12 boys and 15 girls.

In the homily he pronounced without notes, the pontiff took a cue from the requests parents express in the rite, when they ask for their children's baptism: faith.

Such faith, Pope Francis explained, "must be studied in catechism, but it must be first transmitted and this is done at home. [. . .] Faith," he added, "must always be transmitted in the family's, the home's dialect."

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Pope pays surprise visit to cloistered nuns in Umbria

A statement released by the diocese of Foligno revealed that Pope Francis visited the nuns of the Vallegloria Monastery in Spello, who had come to see him in the Vatican in August 2016.

During the private and informal visit, the Pope celebrated Mass together with Bishop Gualtiero Sigismondi of Foligno, spent some time speaking freely and informally to the religious, and then had lunch with them.

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Pope Francis to visit Romania

Pope Francis will travel to Romania for an Apostolic Visit that will take him to the capital Bucharest, to the eastern university city of Iași, to Blaj in Transylvania and to the Marian Shrine of Sumuleu Ciuc on the outskirts of Miercurea Ciuc city, also in Transylvania.

Holy See Press Office ad interim Director, Alessandro Gisotti, said the visit is scheduled to take place from May 31 to June 2. It comes following an invitation by State authorities and the Romanian Catholic Church.

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United Arab Emirates
Muslims and Christians eagerly await Pope Francis

Bishop Paul Hinder, Vicar Apostolic of Southern Arabia, has said the Pope's coming visit to United Arab Emirates next month is being warmly anticipated by Muslims as well as Christians.

Pope Francis would be paying a visit to the "very heart of Islam", Hinder said in a long interview in the January issue of Alle Welt, the quarterly magazine of the Austrian branch of the Pontifical Mission Societies, or Missio.

The Pope's visit to a mosque and the inter-religious dimension of the visit could be compared to St Francis of Assisi's visit to the Egyptian Sultan 800 years ago, Hinder said. "St Francis reached out to the Sultan across entrenched fronts at the time, which led to a friendly visit. I think Pope Francis is going to set a sign, namely, that we must build bridges even if we do not believe in the same things," he added. Such encounters and setting such signs were most important as far as the Muslim world was concerned, "as Muslims react very positively to them."

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Italy
Caritas will still get Trevi coins

After weeks of confusion and consternation, Rome's Mayor told the Vatican newspaper that Rome Caritas would benefit not only from the coins tourists throw in the Trevi Fountain, but from coins tossed in any of the city's historic water features.

Caritas was informed in late December that it would no longer receive the coins that tourists toss over their shoulder into the Trevi Fountain, a ritual that is supposed to guarantee the person who pitched the coin would one day return to the city.

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TURKEY
Construction of first church since 1923

Bulent Kerimoglu, mayor of Bakirkoy, announced a new church will be built in two years in the Yesilkoy district of Bakirkoy, not far from the Ataturk International Airport; it will accommodate more than 700 faithful.

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