Pope Francis made a surprising move Thursday when he ousted all five Italian members of the Vatican's financial watchdog agency, replacing them with four new, international board members.
The pope reportedly made the move after internal conflict continued among old board members of the Holy See's Financial Information Authority [FIA]. The five former board members, all male Italians, reportedly clashed with Rene Bruelhart, a Swiss lawyer who is the head of the FIA and wanted to work with more international professionals experienced in anti-money laundering work.
A secretly filmed video of President Barack Obama engaging in a leisurely workout at a gym in Poland has gone viral and it has triggered a lot of criticism, including comments from some Russians who think the president looks wimpy and lazy.
"He must be joking around? My 2 and-a-half-year-old granddaughter can lift more weights. As a matter of fact, I being disabled can lift more. Let's face it, this man has aged quite a bit since taking office. Playing the role of the American puppet sure takes its toll," wrote Joe Arpa in the comments section of a report on the video on Russia's RT propaganda channel.
Twitter also lit up with criticism of how weak Obama's workout looked. more >>
In a homily on Monday, the single and childless Pope encouraged married couples to not limit their love to their personal pets but to extend to having their own children.
Francis challenged married couples on Monday to resist a "culture of wellbeing" which he suggested had "convinced us it's better not to have children."
The Pope, who is 77 and single and childless, suggested that too many married couples had bought into a "the culture of wellbeing" which tells adherents to "see the world, go on holidays; you can have a house in the country and be carefree." more >>
The Church of England has declared that it is banning its clergy from joining the British National Party and the National Front, claiming that the groups teach ideologies against Anglican principles and hold racist views.
The CofE's House of Bishops announced in a statement on Monday that they had decided at a meeting in May to "declare that the constitution, policies, objectives, activities or public statements of the National Front are incompatible with the teaching of the Church of England in relation to the equality of persons or groups of different races."
A further explanation by the bishops reminds clergy that by canon law, they are required "at all times [to] be diligent to frame and fashion their lives according to the doctrine of Christ, and to make [themselves] wholesome examples and patterns to the flock of Christ." more >>
An old septic tank located next to a former home for unwed mothers run by Catholic nuns in Ireland from 1925 to 1961, was revealed this week to be a massive grave containing the skeletons of nearly 800 infants and children.
The Home, as the former refuge for "fallen women" is known, was run by the Bon Secours nuns in Tuam, according to The Washington Post. The mothers, according to that report, would pay penance for their shame with indentured labor then leave but many of their children never left with them.
A new report claims that Kate Middleton is pregnant with her second child but staying out of the limelight for health reasons. The Duchess of Cambridge was photographed looking gaunt, which fueled speculation that perhaps she was as sick with her pregnancy as she was with Prince George.
"She is so tired at the end of the day, she collapses on her bed," a "royal source" told Life & Style magazine. "She is way beyond exhausted. It's a particularly worrying time for William. He is very concerned."
Even though Kate appeared healthy throughout her trip to Australia and New Zealand, and dispelled pregnancy rumors by drinking wine, speculation has still been rampant that she is, indeed, pregnant. William has even joked that they would be welcoming another baby "soon," though he was vague on a timeline. more >>