The World Cup, which opens today, "overcomes linguistic, cultural and national barriers," the pope said.
Cardinal John Olorunfemi Onaiyekan of Abuja supported Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan's proposal to offer amnesty for any Boko Haram militants who stop fighting and embrace peace.
In a June 3 letter, Onaiyekan said any amnesty arrangement must be undertaken with the goal of reconciliation among the government, militants and victims of violence.
The letter was the fifth the cardinal sent from Rome to Nigeria to address violence in his country. The cardinal said he is in Rome tending to church-related business.
Ukrainian Catholic bishops thanked people around the world for their prayers over the last six months and asked for continued prayers for peace in their country.
"The dignity that Ukrainians yearn for is not first and foremost material," said a message from the Permanent Synod of Bishops of the Ukrainian Catholic Church. "They seek a God-given dignity, a respect for their very being. Their right for self-determination, territorial integrity, cultural and especially ecclesial tradition has been violated brutally in the past and is demeaned today."
The Roman Catholic archbishop of Dublin, regarded as among the most influential church leaders in England and Ireland, has added his voice to those calling for an urgent inquiry into the discovery of nearly 800 babies and children buried in a septic tank at Tuam, a home for unwed mothers in western Ireland.
The scandal is just the latest among many to come to light involving the suffering of children in Ireland's history, and it may be among the factors that have contributed to a big fall in church attendance in recent years.
Pope Francis urged the Israeli and Palestinian presidents to act with courage and end what he called the "spiral of hatred and violence."
During the World Cup in Brazil, a nationwide campaign will raise awareness of the hundreds of vulnerable children at risk of sexual exploitation.
Cardinal Luis Tagle of Manila was saying Mass in typhoon ravaged Palo cathedral at the close of the archdiocese's diamond jubilee celebration last November when he witnessed with admiration the "unshakable faith" of people amidst suffering.
This, Tagle said at a press conference May 30, was what the fund raising concert of sacred music of renowned composer and musician Ryan Cayabyab called "Rise! Rebuilding from the Ruins" on June 11 hopes to recognize.
Essay: Now that I’ve seen the killing fields and the burial plots of Normandy, I wonder if "Operation Overlord" might not be code for the Higher Power.
Pope Francis' upcoming trip to South Korea has sparked controversy there, revealing long-festering church-state divisions and even some feuds among Korean Catholics themselves.
The Irish government established a working group to address details emerging about Catholic-run, state-funded mother-and-baby homes and the burial of deceased children.