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The Francis Chronicles

Pope to UN: Act to end the tragedy in Iraq

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Pope Francis formally asked U.N. agencies and the entire international community "to take action to end the humanitarian tragedy now underway" in northeastern Iraq.

In a letter signed Aug. 9 but released by the Vatican after it had been delivered, Pope Francis told U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon immediate action was needed "to stop and to prevent further systematic violence against ethnic and religious minorities."

Pope says memorize the beatitudes, assess your care for the needy

Christians should memorize not only the Ten Commandments but also the beatitudes, which Jesus taught as the path to true happiness, Pope Francis said.

At his weekly general audience Wednesday, the pope said he was so serious about the need for Christians to know the text of the beatitudes from Matthew 5:3-12 -- "Blessed are the poor in spirit ..." -- that he would read each one out loud and have the crowd repeat it.

More than 6,000 people filled the Vatican audience hall and its atrium for the pope's first general audience after a monthlong break.

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October 24-November 6, 2014

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