Gay and lesbian groups are calling for consumer boycott of Barilla Group, world's leading pasta manufacturer, even after its chairman offered an apology for his remarks on Italian radio that they believe in traditional family and would never use a gay family in advertising.
The Italian pasta firm's website carries an apology by its chairman Guido Barilla. "To all those who have been offended, including the thousands of employees and partners who work with Barilla around the world, I apologize for and regret my insensitive comments," says Barilla. "I understand that they were hurtful and they are not a genuine view of my opinion."
On Wednesday, the 55-year-old chairman said in an interview with Radio 24, "I would never do (a commercial) with a homosexual family, not for lack of respect but because we don't agree with them," according to Reuters. "Ours is a classic family where the woman plays a fundamental role." more >>
A convicted pedophile priest, who named 20 other Catholic priests saying they used underage rent-boys for sex and pointed to an underage gay prostitution ring inside the Holy Roman Church, has been arrested for "making up" the allegations.
Don Patrizio Poggi, who spent five years in prison for sexually abusing underage boys at his parish on the outskirts of Rome, was arrested Friday, The Telegraph reported.
Italian prosecutors said the claims of the 46-year-old priest were "untrue or based on mere hearsay," and that he had personal enmity with some of the clerics he named. They also charged him with an attempt to coach possible victims to support his claims. more >>
Pope Francis is set to unveil a MISSIO app the Friday before Pentecost Sunday for the Pontifical Mission Societies.
"This App is a way for the Church and our Holy Father to reach the growing number of the world's people who have access to handheld mobile devices -- a way to connect as the one Body of Christ," Father Andrew Small, OMI, National Director of the Pontifical Mission Societies, said in a press release. "We're delighted our new Holy Father will 'unlock' the new App. What a great use of the Keys of St. Peter!"
The launch will occur during an audience with the Pope of the National Directors of the Pontifical Mission Societies, who will be at the annual meeting to distribute collected funds. more >>
Thousands of people gathered in St. Peter's Square Tuesday morning to witness the inauguration of Pope Francis as the 266th pontiff of the Roman Catholic Church, who again used his platform to advocate for the poor.
Addressing the crowd, the newly installed pope spoke of his office and said that "authentic power is service…"
"He (pope) must be inspired by the lowly, concrete and faithful service which marked St. Joseph and, like him, he must open his arms to protect all of God's people and embrace with tender affection the whole of humanity, especially the poorest, the weakest, the least important, those whom Matthew lists in the final judgment on love: the hungry, the thirsty, the stranger, the naked, the sick and those in prison. Only those who serve with love are able to protect." more >>
ROME – When the white smoke appeared, those of us in St. Peter's Square couldn't help but feel that we stood at the heart of our faith: architectural beauty surrounded us as smoke wafted upwards and bells tolled; a real sense of hope spread among people of all ages and nationalities as we waited to see who would step out on the balcony as our next Pope.
When Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina appeared, the crowd's first reaction was surprise. That in itself should have been surprising: while Bergoglio's name wasn't frequently mentioned this past week, he had significant support in the last conclave, and that support clearly remained strong.
And for good reason: Pope Francis is someone who has lived out the Christian ideals of humility and service. In Argentina he was seen as an intellectual and a pastor who eschewed the trappings of his office, a man of great personal holiness and simplicity. Says Alejandro Bermudez, a leader in the Christian Life Movement, "Pope Francis is the man Argentineans know for leaving the Archbishop's mansion for a small apartment at a downtown parish in Buenos Aires, who travels by bus and subway, and who during the consistory of 2001, when he was created a Cardinal, requested that wealthy Argentineans renounce accompanying him and give the equivalent amount to the poor. Pope Francis has the mind of a Jesuit and the lifestyle of a Franciscan. I have no doubt that his simplicity and courage will take the Church to where it longs to be." more >>
Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina will be the new pope with the name Pope Francis. One hundred and fifteen cardinals locked away in the Sistine Chapel announced to the world Wednesday that a new pope had been selected when thick white smoke could be seen billowing out from the chapel's chimney. Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, 76, was selected and took the name Francis.
He is the first pope elected from Argentina and was the runner up to Pope Benedict XVI. Bergoglio, now Pope Francis, is revered for being a man of the people and for his continued commitment to social justice. He chose to live in a small apartment, rather than in the luxurious bishop's residence, and is still seen using public transportation.
As the cardinals entered the second night of the conclave, many were not expecting a decision so soon, given that there was no clear front runner going into the papal elections. more >>