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By Catholic News Service PEORIA, Ill. — A seven-member team of medical experts convoked by the Vatican reported there is no natural explanation for the survival of a child delivered stillborn and whose heart did not start beating until 61 minutes after his birth.

Pope Francis places ashes on head of Slovakian Cardinal Jozef Tomko during Ash Wednesday Mass at the Basilica of Santa Sabina in Rome March 5. (CNS photo/Paul Haring) (March 5, 2014) See POPE-ASHWEDNESDAY March 5, 2014.
By Cindy Wooden Catholic News Service  ROME — Lent is meant to wake up Christians and help them see that God can give them the strength to change their lives and their surroundings, Pope Francis said. Before receiving and distributing ashes at an evening Mass March 5, Ash Wednesday, Pope …

Swiss Guards salute as Pope Francis leaves a meeting of cardinals in the synod hall at the Vatican Feb. 21. (CNS photo/Paul Haring) (Feb. 21, 2014) See CARDINALS-FAMILY Feb. 21, 2014.
By Carol Glatz Catholic News Service VATICAN CITY — When Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran walked onto the central balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica, telling the crowds in Latin: “I announce to you a great joy. We have a pope!” not many people recognized the name of then-Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio of Buenos …

By Mark Pattison Catholic News Service WASHINGTON — The upcoming movie “Son of God” should be seen as “a love story,” according to two of its executive producers, the husband-and-wife team of Mark Burnett and Roma Downey.

Pope Francis greets the crowd as he arrives to lead his general audience in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican Feb. 19. (CNS photo/Paul Haring) (Feb. 19, 2014) See POPE-AUDIENCE Feb. 19, 2014.
Catholic News Service VATICAN CITY — If you haven’t been to confession recently, don’t wait, Pope Francis told people at his weekly general audience. One may walk into the confessional with a heavy heart, but forgiveness brings freedom and lightness. “If a lot of time has passed, don’t lose even …

By John Mulderig Catholic News Service NEW YORK — For much of 2013, Hollywood seemed to be in the doldrums, turning out a good deal of product, but very little of quality. With the approach of year’s end, and the looming awards season, however, things improved remarkably. So much so, …

By Cindy Wooden Catholic News Service VATICAN CITY — In retirement, Pope Benedict XVI follows a daily schedule similar to that of any retired bishop or religious: He prays, reads, strolls, talks with people and offers them spiritual advice, the Vatican spokesman said. Although he “lives in a low-key way, …

By Cindy Wooden Catholic News Service VATICAN CITY — The U.N. Committee on the Rights of the Child continued to insist that the Vatican compile and publish detailed statistics on clerical sexual abuse of minors and that the pope, as head of the church, can and should order Catholic dioceses …

Pope Francis waves as he leaves general audience in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican
By Carol Glatz Catholic News Service VATICAN CITY — Courageously follow Jesus in seeking out the poor and sinners, and in making difficult sacrifices in order to help and heal others, Pope Francis said. Christians are called to confront the material, spiritual and moral destitution of “our brothers and sisters, …

By Carol Glatz Catholic News Service VATICAN CITY — Catholic universities must give “uncompromising” and “unambiguous” witness to church teaching and defend themselves from all efforts to dilute their Catholic identity, Pope Francis said.