Pope Francis has asked Catholic churches around the world to keep their doors open despite terror threats following the Nov. 13 Paris attacks, saying terror groups must not be allowed to influence "every aspect of our lives," and especially the hospitality of the church.
"An inhospitable Church, like a family which is locked in on itself, demeans the Gospel and withers up the world," Pope Francis said during a general audience in the Vatican, according to Catholic News Agency. "No armored doors in the Church! Open all of them!"
The 78-year-old pontiff told pilgrims in St Peter's square that "if the door of God's mercy is always open," we must leave the doors of our institutions open so that "we can go out carrying God's mercy." more >>
Pope Francis is set to begin his tour of several African countries on Wednesday, and will be visiting communities torn apart by Islamic militants and Muslim-Christian strife with a message that all people are one human family.
"We are living at a time when religious believers, and persons of goodwill everywhere are called to foster mutual understanding and respect, and to support each other as members of our one human family. For all of us are God's children," Francis said in his pre-trip message. more >>
"The Late Show" host Stephen Colbert, a Roman Catholic, invited atheist HBO host Bill Maher to come back to the faith during a recent interview, which stayed a humorous tone, but also touched on more serious issues.
The two comedians took jabs at each other over their different worldviews, with Maher beginning the discussion on religion by stating that he and Colbert are "very opposite," because the latter is married and is religious, referring to his Catholic faith.
Colbert affirmed that he "gives religion a shot," stating that "I suck as a Catholic," but insisted that doesn't mean he doesn't keep practicing the faith. more >>
Pope Francis has condemned the terror attacks on Paris on Friday that left 129 people dead, and argued that those who use God's name to justify murder are committing blasphemy.
"Pope Francis said such barbarity leaves us stunned as we wonder how human hearts can think up and carry out such atrocities which 'have shocked not only France but the whole world.' The pope stressed again that 'the way of violence and hatred does not resolve the problems of humanity,' adding that whoever uses God's name to justify that path is guilty of blasphemy," the Vatican Radio reported of the pontiff's words on Sunday at St. Peter's Square.
The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the mass shootings and bombings at Paris bars, restaurants, a concert hall and a stadium, which also left over 350 injured on Friday. more >>
Pope Francis has said in a recent speech that humanism and caring for others should be centered on Jesus Christ.
At a meeting of the Fifth National Convention of the Italian Church in Florence, Francis said humanism should take its starting point from "the centrality of Jesus," in whom people discover "the features of the authentic face of man."
WASHINGTON — Hundreds of Catholic students from across the United States met Monday with members of Congress and urged them to stand with Pope Francis on climate change, immigration reform, and human rights in Central America.
An estimated 1,200 concerned individuals, mostly college and high school students representing 90 Catholic institutions from 25 states, Canada, El Salvador and Mexico, gathered in Washington D.C. over the weekend for the annual Ignatian Family Teach-In for Justice conference.
To cap off the weekend-long conference, the liberal-leaning Ignatian Solidarity Network hosted a day of advocacy on Capitol Hill Monday morning, which marked the largest Catholic advocacy day of the year. more >>