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Thousands march in Rome to show support for Pope Francis' eco-encyclical

Religious leaders from across the globe led a “Many Faiths -- One Planet” march to the Vatican on Sunday to show their support of Pope Francis’ groundbreaking environmental encyclical.

Organizers estimated a crowd of 5,000 people reached St. Peter’s Square to celebrate the pontiff’s tough stance on climate change, after parading through Rome under a canopy of painted banners. The march was endorsed by the United Nations and a number of Catholic organizations, including Catholic Action and the Global Catholic Climate Movement

Francis creates secretariat to elevate, consolidate Vatican communications

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Pope Francis has consolidated and elevated the level of importance of the Vatican's different communications enterprises, creating a new high-level Secretariat for Communications tasked with carrying out work before undertaken by nine separate offices.

The new secretariat becomes only the third of its type at the highest levels of the Vatican bureaucracy, joining church departments that oversee foreign and internal relations and economic matters in importance.

Source: Ecology encyclical to say climate change 'mainly' human caused

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Pope Francis' highly anticipated encyclical letter on ecological issues will state that global climate change is "mainly" due to human activity, a person familiar with the document has said.

The encyclical, to be released Thursday, will reportedly say that while there are both natural and human causes to climate change "great natural forces are not under our control; human causes are."

Francis: Christians obligated to help those in need

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Pope Francis has poignantly said that Christians have no right to refuse help to those who need it, saying that to partake in the commemoration of Christ's death is to see him in the poor and suffering and to welcome them and offer help.

Speaking during his weekly Angelus address in St. Peter's Square Sunday, the pope reflected on the meaning of the Catholic feast day celebrated this week, that of Corpus Christi or The Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ.

Celebrating Corpus Christi feast, Pope Francis honors persecuted Christians

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The Eucharist is the seal of God's covenant, uniting Christians and giving them the strength to bring God's love to others, even when faith carries a high price, Pope Francis said.

Celebrating the feast of the Body and Blood of Christ with an evening Mass outside Rome's Basilica of St. John Lateran on Thursday, Pope Francis said the church and its members will never cease being in awe of the Eucharist.

As the sun began to set, the Mass was followed by a traditional Corpus Christi procession from St. John Lateran to the Basilica of St. Mary Major, one mile away.

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