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St. Vincent de Paul members abducted in Syria, whereabouts unknown

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The Society of St. Vincent de Paul has been unable to confirm the number of its members abducted in Syria, as well as where they are being held.

"We're waiting for news," Helene Afriat, communications officer for the International Confederation of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul in Paris, told Catholic News Service on Friday. She added that communication with people in the Mideast was "very difficult."

Filipino Cardinal Tagle named head of Catholic Biblical Federation

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Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle of Manila, Philippines, has been named the new president of the Catholic Biblical Federation.

While Tagle was elected unanimously as head of the federation at an Oct. 24-25 meeting in Rome of its executive committee, Pope Francis confirmed his election March 5.

He will assume his office at the federation's plenary assembly, to take place June 18-23 in Nemi, Italy. Tagle will succeed Italian Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, who has been president of the Catholic Biblical Federation since 2002.

Kenya’s Catholic church to fight hunger by farming its vast land reserves

Drying livestock carcasses and anguished faces of hungry women and children have become a common feature here as droughts increase due to climate change.

But now, in an effort to fight hunger, the Roman Catholic church is making 3,000 acres of church-owned land available for commercial farming.

“We want to produce food, create employment and improve quality of life for the people,” said Fr. Celestino Bundi, Kenya’s national director of the Pontifical Mission Societies.

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