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Vatican City

Cardinal Mahony says Vatican told him to attend conclave

Cardinal Roger Mahony expressed "amazement" at calls that he withdraw from the upcoming papal conclave because of his record on clergy sex abuse and said the Vatican, acting through its ambassador to the United States, had instructed him to take part in the election of the next pope.

"I'm here because the Holy Father appointed me a cardinal in 1991, and the primary job of a cardinal, the No. 1 job, is actually the election of a new pope should a vacancy occur," the cardinal told Catholic News Service on Feb. 28, two days after arriving in Rome.

Vatican denounces press reports on papal transition

Vatican officials released a pair of unusual statements Saturday condemning some press coverage of the papal transition.

A communique from the Secretariat of State called "deplorable" the "widespread distribution of often unverified, unverifiable or completely false news stories" intended to exert "pressures on the election of the pope."

Indonesian cardinal says poor eyesight will keep him from conclave

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At least one of the 117 cardinals eligible to elect a new pope will not come to Rome because of illness.

Indonesian Cardinal Julius Darmaatmadja, the 78-year-old retired archbishop of Jakarta, told the Rome-based AsiaNews agency Thursday that his health and particularly the "progressive deterioration" of his eyesight led to his decision not to travel to Rome.

Pope asks cardinal to lead financially troubled religious order

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Pope Benedict XVI has entrusted the leadership of the financially troubled Sons of the Immaculate Conception to Cardinal Giuseppe Versaldi, president of the Prefecture for the Economic Affairs of the Holy See.

The religious order, which has about 400 priests and brothers, runs a major hospital in Rome specializing in diseases and cancers of the skin. Its members also work in North and South America, Africa, Europe and Asia.

Conclave to silence at least nine tweeting cardinals

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Parrots may squawk in the Vatican Gardens during a conclave, but the cardinals are not allowed to tweet.

For most of the 117 red-vested princes of the church who are eligible to vote for a new pope, Twitter isn't an issue at all. But the College of Cardinals does include at least nine active tweeters. From the moment they enter the Sistine Chapel to cast their ballots, they will be forbidden access to their accounts along with all other forms of communication with the outside world.

Don't leave home without them: Credit cards welcome again at Vatican

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After more than six weeks of not being able to accept credit- and debit-card payments in the Vatican Museums and shops, the Vatican announced Wednesday that it had begun accepting plastic again.

Jesuit Fr. Federico Lombardi, Vatican spokesman, also told reporters Wednesday that it was likely that the Institute for the Works of Religion, commonly known as the Vatican bank, would have a new president "in a few days."

On Ash Wednesday, pope preaches on humility, Christian unity

Celebrating what was expected to be the last public liturgy of his pontificate two weeks before his resignation, Pope Benedict XVI preached on the virtues of humility and Christian unity and heard his highest-ranking aide pay tribute to his service to the church.

Jesus "denounces religious hypocrisy, behavior that wants to show off, attitudes that seek applause and approval," the pope said in his homily during Mass on Wednesday in St. Peter's Basilica. "The true disciple does not serve himself or the 'public,' but his Lord, in simplicity and generosity."

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July 18-31, 2014

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