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Francis

Canada, Brazil likely to have new saints before year's end, Jesuit says

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Three key figures in the establishment of the Catholic church in Canada and in Brazil are likely to be declared saints before the end of the year, said a Jesuit who is helping prepare the material needed for their canonizations.

The three speeding their way toward sainthood are: Blessed Jose Anchieta, known as the Apostle of Brazil; Blessed Marie de l'Incarnation, known as the Mother of the Canadian Church; and Blessed Francois de Laval, the first bishop of Quebec.

Pope Francis' first Lenten message to focus on poverty, generosity

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Pope Francis has chosen the theme, "He became poor, so that by his poverty you might become rich," for this year's Lenten message, said a Vatican statement Friday.

The theme comes from a verse from St. Paul's Second Letter to the Corinthians, where the apostle is promoting generosity in giving and wishes to "test the genuineness of your love by your concern for others."

The full verse reads: "For you know the gracious act of our Lord Jesus Christ, that for your sake he became poor although he was rich, so that by his poverty you might become rich" (2 Cor 8:9).

Pope Francis & Notre Dame

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Pope Francis' tough side came out Thursday. The mailed, hierarchic fist finally emerged from the velvet, pastoral glove. The pope received Fr. John Jenkins and the board of trustees of the University of Notre Dame, and he gave them a tongue-lashing. He criticized Notre Dame for failing to abide by the norms for Catholic identity set forth in Ex Corde Ecclesiae. The pope told the university leaders they had "prostituted" their Catholic identity by inviting President Barack Obama to give a graduation speech.

Christian identity must be clear, uncompromising, pope tells university

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Catholic universities must give "uncompromising" and "unambiguous" witness to church teaching and defend themselves from all efforts to dilute their Catholic identity, Pope Francis said.

Catholic universities, "by their very nature, are committed to demonstrating the harmony of faith and reason and the relevance of the Christian message for a full and authentically human life," he said in an audience with members of the board of trustees of the University of Notre Dame and other officials.

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August 15-28, 2014

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