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Desperate bishops should not accept just anyone as priests, Pope Francis warns

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In an address to the Vatican Congregation for the Clergy, Pope Francis warned bishops against accepting men for the priesthood who are not healthy or balanced.

The Congregation for the Clergy deals with priestly vocations and formation as well as the life of priests. The pope spoke Friday during a plenary meeting of the congregation, which includes cardinals and bishops from all over the world.

Cardinal Nichols: Synod to be frank, but going 'gently and sensitively'

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Discussions inside the global meeting of Catholic bishops on issues of family life are going to be "open and frank" with a focus on the lived realities of people today, one of the cardinals attending the closed-door event said Saturday.

"In the end, what we're talking about always are people's lives," said Cardinal Vincent Nichols, who is the archbishop of Westminster and is attending the Oct. 5-19 Synod of Bishops as the president of the bishops' conference of England and Wales.

New York luminaries gather at Al Smith Dinner to raise money for children, the poor

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The annual Alfred E. Smith Foundation Dinner was held Wednesday evening at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in midtown Manhattan. The event is a must-attend for the major luminaries of politics, finance and the church. It raises millions of dollars for programs to help children and the poor.

Pope Francis, Cardinal Kasper, and the Eucharist as medicine

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Pope Francis has indicated he wants the bishops to set forth on a new mission: overturning the old expectation that church news would always be bad. His first proclamation, he explained, is that "Christ has saved you," and an attitude of mercy must follow from that revelation. "Only someone who has encountered mercy, who has been caressed by the tenderness of mercy, is happy and comfortable with the Lord," he has said. If the church is a "field hospital," Francis explained, it must bring mercy and healing to its patients.

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November 21-December 5, 2014

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