The pope will seek to bring hope to a country suffering from crime, corruption and inequality when he visits Feb. 12-17.
Pope Francis and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani met in a private meeting in which the pontiff pressed Rouhani on fostering Middle East peace and countering terrorism and arms trafficking.
Italian bishops are united in reaffirming the rights of children to be raised by both a mother and a father, according to Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco of Genoa.
Pope Francis will visit Sweden in October to participate in an ecumenical service and the beginning of a year of activities to mark the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation.
Two decades after her anti-death penalty work was transformed into an Oscar-winning movie, “Dead Man Walking,” Sr. Helen Prejean’s campaign continues with the backing of Pope Francis.
Pope Francis has changed the rules so a priest may wash the feet of women and others in the community and not just men, as church law had previously decreed.
Vatican City -- Pope decrees that people chosen for the washing of the feet in the liturgy of Holy Thursday may be selected from all the People of God, and not only men and boys.
Pope Francis is studying an invitation he received to visit the Grand Mosque of Rome. If he accepts, Francis would be the first pope to visit the mosque.
A homeless woman was offered a place to stay at a Vatican women's shelter after she gave birth to a baby girl near the colonnade surrounding St. Peter's Square, the Vatican spokesman said.
Jesuit Fr. Federico Lombardi, Vatican spokesman, said the Romanian woman, who is one of many homeless in the city, gave birth to the baby in the early morning hours Jan. 20 in Piazza Pio XII, just outside of Bernini's colonnade. Local police, who helped with the delivery, transported the mother and child to the nearby Santo Spirito Hospital.
Religious leaders must identify and publicly distance themselves from extremists preaching animosity toward others, according to Comboni Fr. Miguel Angel Ayuso Guixot, secretary of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue.