Francis wants to retool the hierarchy so it not only defines and enforces church teachings, but also listens and responds to how laypeople understand God's will, he said.
Catholic Ireland has become the first country to introduce gay marriage by popular vote, with 62 percent voting "Yes" in a referendum on Friday.
On Saturday, the Catholic church beatified Archbishop Oscar Romero of El Salvador, who was assassinated in 1980 while celebrating Mass.
UN nuclear weapons review conference ends without a consensus statement, but majority, in a insurgent revolt, sign petition call for a total nuclear weapons ban.
More than 55,000 people have signed a petition calling for Cardinal George Pell to return to Australia after allegations that he tried to bribe the victim of a pedophile priest.
Philippines Cardinal Luis Tagle called on Catholics to embrace and live out the Second Vatican Council's sense of openness to the modern world.
Faith and Justice: The Nigerian people are hospitable and hard-working, but they face huge problems: corruption, sectarian violence, and an almost total dependency on oil revenues.
Catholic church leaders and scholars are not the only ones praising the 50-year-old church document Nostra Aetate ("In Our Time"), the Second Vatican Council's declaration on relations with non-Christian religions.
During the first part of a May 19-21 symposium on the document at The Catholic University of America, it also got high marks from a U.S. Muslim leader who said Nostra Aetate helps different faiths "recognize common roots and build a new sense of direction."
Global Sisters Report: The sisters, who lost family members in El Salvador's civil war, will be among the 250,000 people at the beatification ceremony.