Vatican News

Pope Francis: prayers for flood victims in Bangladesh, India, Nepal

Vatican News - Sun, 08/27/2017 - 07:44
(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis offered prayers on Sunday for the victims of massive flooding in Bangladesh, Nepal, and northern India over the past several days. “I express my closeness to all the [affected] populations, and pray for the victims and for all who suffer because of this calamity,” Pope Francis said. The Holy Father was speaking to pilgrims and tourists gathered in St. Peter’s Square for the traditional Sunday Angelus prayer. Click below to hear our report Annual monsoon rains have caused the flooding, which has claimed the lives of more than 1200 people, and disrupted the lives of some 24 million others. Rescue and relief efforts are ongoing, with international aid agencies reporting thousands of villages cut off. People in remote and isolated areas have been without food and clean water for many days. (from Vatican Radio)...
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Pope Francis: appeal for end to violence against Rohingya

Vatican News - Sun, 08/27/2017 - 07:27
(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis on Sunday appealed for an end to the violent persecution of the minority Rohingya population in Burma . Speaking to pilgrims and tourists in St. Peter’s Square following the Angelus prayer, the Holy Father said, “Sad news has reached us of the persecution of our Rohingya brothers and sisters, a religious minority. I would like to express my full closeness to them – and let all of us ask the Lord to save them, and to raise up men and women of good will to help them, who shall give them their full rights.” Click below to hear our report Pope Francis went on to say, “Let us pray for our Rohingya brethren.” Who are the Rohingya? The Rohingya are an ethnic minority who live mostly in Rakhine State – sometimes styled Arakan – on the western coast of Burma, and practice Islam . The government of Burma – also known as Myanmar – does not recognize the citizenship or the ethnic minority status of the Rohingya. After several years of fighting with the majority Buddhist population in the state, Rohingya began fleeing their native land en masse , precipitating a refugee crisis. Organized violence against the Rohingya, with the participation of government forces, has been underway since at least 2015 , with spikes of intensity in 2016 and 2017 . Rohingya flee to Bangladesh  Nearly 100 thousand Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh in the past year, though the Bangladeshi government has yet to recognize the refugee status of the displaced minority. Most recent violence Pope Francis’ appeal Sunday follows fighting between the Rohingya and the regular Burmese army on Friday in the city of Maungdaw , which is reported to be the worst since October of last year , and has prompted evacuations from the area of government personnel and of non-Muslims. Nearly 100 people are officially reported dead in the ongoing clashes, including 80 Rohingya insurgents and 12 members of the Burmese security forces deployed in the theatre. (from Vatican Radio)...
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Pope Francis: video message to Jasna Gora pilgrims

Vatican News - Sat, 08/26/2017 - 06:44
(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis sent a video message to pilgrims participating in celebrations for the Feast of Our Lady of Czestochowa on Saturday at her shrine in the central Polish city. 300 th  anniversary celebrations This year marks the 300 th anniversary of the coronation of the Black Madonna , as the icon of our lady housed in the shrine in the monastery of Jasna Gora is also known. Mary our tender Mother In his remarks, the Holy Father says, “The sacred image, in fact, shows us that Mary is not a distant Queen , who sits on a throne, but the Mother who embraces the Son , and with Him, all of us, her children.” The Holy Father also says, “She is a true Mother , with her visage signed, a Mother who suffers because she truly takes to heart the problems of our lives. She is a Mother who is close by, who never lets us out of her sight – a tender Mother, who holds us by the hand on our daily journey.” No one an orphan Pope Francis goes on to say, “Let this be the propitious time, in which to feel that no one of us is an orphan.” (from Vatican Radio)...
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