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IMAGE: CNS photo/Oscar Durand By Oscar Durand LIMA, Peru (CNS) — Elide Pena, 55, grins when she talks about her favorite Christmas memory: the time when she fell under Santa’s sleigh attempting to grab a toy for one of her grandchildren during a Christmas party in her native Venezuela. For

By Carol Glatz VATICAN CITY (CNS) — In today’s climate of mistrust, rejection and nationalism, the world urgently needs peacemakers and politicians who protect and lovingly serve others, Pope Francis said in his annual message for the World Day of Peace Jan. 1. "Terror exerted over those who are most

IMAGE: CNS photo/Bob Roller By Mark Pattison WASHINGTON (CNS) — It has been 25 years and counting, but Father Michael Shields doesn’t have any plans to leave the mission of the Archdiocese of Anchorage, Alaska, in Magadan, Russia, at least any time soon. Father Shields, 69, loves his ministry in

IMAGE: CNS photo/Giuseppe Lami, EPA By Carol Glatz VATICAN CITY (CNS) — With Christmas just over a week away, visitors came to St. Peter’s Square with their Baby Jesus figurines for a traditional blessing by the pope. Many children came with small figurines for their family Nativity scene, others held

IMAGE: CNS photo/Giuseppe Lami, EPA By Cindy Wooden VATICAN CITY (CNS) — If the Holy Family lived in Rome and the baby Jesus had a cold or flu, Mary and Joseph certainly would bring him to the Vatican pediatric clinic for help, Pope Francis said. The Vatican’s St. Martha Dispensary

IMAGE: CNS photo/Joshua Lott, Reuters By Mark Pattison WASHINGTON (CNS) — The farm bill that passed both houses of Congress by wide margins doesn’t have money in it to protect endangered species, but it did preserve one that had been on the threatened list: bipartisanship. "We were so excited that

By Mark Pattison WASHINGTON (CNS) — Changes in law and public opinion have had their role to play in the quest to end capital punishment in the United States, but Catholic teaching also has played a part, according to Robert Dunham, executive director of the Death Penalty Information Center. "Pope

IMAGE: CNS photo/Vatican Media By Junno Arocho Esteves VATICAN CITY (CNS) — As the celebration of Christmas draws near, the plight of the Holy Family calls to mind the sufferings of the many men, women and children escaping war and persecution, Pope Francis said. Meeting with organizers and artists participating

IMAGE: CNS photo/Claudio Peri, EPA By Carol Glatz VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Anyone who still believes the abuse crisis is an "American" or "Western" problem must become properly informed, face reality and realize problems may be hidden and explode in the future, said Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi. And those who

IMAGE: CNS/Paul Haring By Cindy Wooden VATICAN CITY (CNS) — For more than 38 years, Capuchin Father Raniero Cantalamessa has preached to the pope and top officials of the Roman Curia. In early January, he will lead the weeklong retreat of the U.S. bishops. As they continue to study and