National Catholic Reporter

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Vatican City

Pope Francis: Concern for poor is sign of Gospel, not red flag of communism

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Focusing on poverty and sacrificing for the poor are the heart of the Gospel, not signs of communism, Pope Francis said at his morning Mass.

Furthermore, if Christians don't dig deep and generously open up their wallets, they do not have "genuine faith," the pope said Tuesday during the Mass in the chapel of the Domus Sanctae Marthae.

He said people often hear, "Oh, this priest speaks about poverty too much, this bishop talks about poverty, this Christian, this sister talk about poverty. Well, they're a bit communist, aren't they?"

Children need heterosexual parents, Pope Francis says after gay pride march

Pope Francis on Sunday stressed the importance of children having heterosexual parents, just a day after Rome's gay pride march demonstrated the changing attitudes about same-sex couples outside the Vatican walls.

Addressing around 25,000 followers from the diocese of Rome, the pope said the differences between men and women are fundamental and "an integral part of being human."

The pope likened a long-lasting marriage to a good wine, in which a husband and wife make the most of their gender differences.

Pope: God offers everyone his mercy as safe haven, door to salvation

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God offers his mercy to everyone, showing his deep desire that everyone be saved, Pope Francis said.

Divine mercy is a safe and certain "shelter for whoever is weak and does not presume to save himself on his own," the pope said Friday, the feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

Addressing the World Seminar for Catholic Civil Aviation Chaplaincies at the Vatican, the pope said airports are like "cities within cities" where chaplains meet people from many nations, cultures and religions.

Help Catholics understand, appreciate marriage, pope tells bishops

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When marriage is considered mainly as a way to satisfy one's need for affection, people feel free to define marriage however they want, Pope Francis said.

"Unfortunately, such a reductionist idea influences the mentality of Christians as well," leading some to see separation or divorce as a simple solution when problems arise, the pope told the bishops of Latvia and Estonia.

Pope Francis to open 30-bed homeless shelter a few steps from Vatican walls

Pope Francis will open a homeless shelter on the edge of Vatican City, the latest move by the pontiff to help poor people in Rome.

The shelter is under construction on Via Penitenzieri, just a few steps away from the Vatican walls, a Holy See spokeswoman said.

Once completed, the center will be run by volunteers, who will host 30 people at a time.

Setting up a shelter is just one of a few initiatives by Pope Francis to highlight the suffering of homeless people in the Italian capital.

Pope, Canadian prime minister discuss residential schools, Ukraine

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Religious freedom, the conflict in Ukraine and the environment were on the table as Pope Francis met briefly Thursday with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, the Vatican said.

The prime minister's office said their discussions also included reference to the findings, released June 2, of Canada's Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which detailed the treatment of aboriginal children in residential schools supported by the Canadian government but administered by religious organizations, including the Catholic church.

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In This Issue

August 28-September 10, 2015

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