National Catholic Reporter

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Vatican

Cardinal: Vatican diplomats have mission to save souls, build peace

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Over the centuries, the international community has developed criteria for determining whether a war is just and for regulating conduct in combat; now it needs clearer guidelines for "humanitarian intervention" and for post-conflict reconciliation, said the Vatican secretary of state.

Cardinal Pietro Parolin, Pope Francis' top aide and chief coordinator of the Vatican diplomatic corps, also warned against indifference toward situations of conflict around the world.

Pope Francis to celebrate Holy Thursday Mass at prison, wash feet of detainees

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Pope Francis will celebrate the Holy Thursday Mass of the Lord's Supper at a Rome prison and wash the feet of male and female inmates.

The Vatican announced Wednesday that the pope will visit the Rebibbia detention facility on the outskirts of the capital April 2, then celebrate Mass in Our Father Church on the grounds of the complex. During the Mass, the pope will wash the feet of male inmates from Rebibbia and female inmates from a nearby women's prison.

Don't be bitter or give up; offer the world your wisdom, Pope Francis tells seniors

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Don't pack it in or shift into cruise control, Pope Francis told his fellow seniors.

Today's frenetic world, especially young people and families, needs the older generation's prayers, wisdom and gifts to give them the encouragement, hope and faith they often lack, he said at his weekly general audience Wednesday.

Vatican knew about theft of Michelangelo letters, refuses ransom demand

The Vatican on Monday said it has received a ransom demand to recover letters signed by Michelangelo, stolen from the Holy See nearly 20 years ago.

Two letters signed by Michelangelo, one written in its entirety by the Renaissance artist, were stolen from the Vatican's Fabbrica di San Pietro archive in 1997.

The thefts were kept secret until Sunday, when the Italian daily Il Messaggero revealed that the documents had been put up for ransom.

Pope Francis: Mass in vernacular helps people understand God, live the faith

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Allowing priests to celebrate Mass in the language of the local congregation rather than in Latin allowed the faithful to understand and be encouraged by the word of God, Pope Francis said.

"You cannot turn back. We have to always go forward, always forward and who goes back is making a mistake," he told parishioners after commemorating the 50th anniversary of the first time a pope celebrated Mass in the vernacular following the Second Vatican Council.

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