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Francis

Pope Francis: Going to Mass should be a life-changing event

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Going to Mass and receiving the Eucharist should make a difference in the way Catholics live, Pope Francis said; they should be more accepting of others and more aware of their sinfulness.

"If we don't feel in need of God's mercy and don't think we are sinners, it's better not to go to Mass," Pope Francis said Wednesday at his weekly general audience. The Eucharist is a celebration of Christ's gift of himself for the salvation of sinners, which is why the Mass begins with people confessing they are sinners and begging for the Lord's mercy.

Pope Francis and his really hostile critics

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Since his election, Pope Francis has made millions of friends and admirers. But he has acquired some critics, too. Then there are the extremely hostile, outspoken opponents who see him as a heretic or deceiver and speak with shrill and caustic voices. Not surprisingly, many of these come from the extremes of the religious traditions that Pope Francis talks a lot about -- Catholics and Jews.

Pope clears way for beatification of 124 Korean martyrs

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Pope Francis recognized the martyrdom of 124 Catholics who were killed during widespread persecution in Korea in the 18th through 19th centuries.

He also approved a decree recognizing the martyrdom of Conventual Franciscan Fr. Francesco Zirano, an Italian priest killed in Algeria in 1603.

The pope's approval of the martyrdom decrees Friday opened the way for the martyrs' beatifications on a date yet to be announced. A miracle is required before any blessed may be canonized.

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August 29-September 11, 2014

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