Papal pop-by at Roman eyewear shop draws an enthusiastic crowd
Even the most ho-hum errands become extraordinary if it’s the Pope who’s running them. And it is no different for Pope Francis, who popped in to his eye doctor on Thursday to get some new lenses and attracted a mob of onlookers in a matter of minutes. The Pope rolled up in his blue Ford Focus to the optometry shop, Ottica Spiezia, located along the posh Via del Babuino, the evening of Sept. 3 accompanied by a modest entourage of security guards, a witness told the Associated Press.
US cardinal welcomes Pope’s initiative on absolution of abortions
Under current canon law, abortion is a “reserved” sin, and can be absolved only by the diocesan bishop or priests to whom the bishop delegates that authority. “Recognizing the seriousness of the sin of abortion and the implications this can have for those involved, Pope Francis is making particular outreach to women, noting that many women were under great pressure and felt that they had no choice,” Cardinal Seán O’Malley of Boston, chairman of the Committee on Pro-Life Activities of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, said in a statement.
Serve families, hear confessions: Pope's requests to priests of Schoenstatt Movement
n a message to priests of the Schoenstatt Movement, Pope Francis said that priests “must never be above or in front of others, but instead must walk alongside them, loving them with the same love of Christ.” In his September 3 message to participants in a general chapter of the movement, the Pope cited with approval the inside of the founder, Father Kentenich, that “it was necessary to keep an ear to God's heart and a hand on the pulse of the time… These are the two pillars of an authentic spiritual life.”
Meet the monks who decided to go green years before Laudato Si
Years before Pope Francis’ recent ecology encyclical was published, a Trappist monastery in Virginia went back to its spiritual roots by embracing environmental stewardship. “This really is a re-founding,” Fr. James Orthmann of Holy Cross Abbey in Berryville, Va. told CNA, a “real renewal and a re-founding, and in a real sense getting back to our traditional roots.” Since 2007, the community has taken concrete steps be better stewards of the earth in the tradition of the Cistercian Order, while also reaching into the outside world to draw more Catholic men to their monastic life.
Trip through Central Park added to pope’s New York itinerary
Pope Francis will get a glimpse of leafy Central Park and thousands of waving New Yorkers Sept. 25 when he makes "a historic procession" through the urban landmark, according to the city's mayor. Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Sept 1 the pope will ride along the West Drive of the park on his way to celebrate Mass at Madison Square Garden, which is set for 6 p.m.