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Cardinal Parolin signs message full of encouragement and blessing for relief efforts. Meanwhile, rescuers are carrying out a house-to-house search for survivors, with dwindling hope. The death toll rises to 156 but is expected to get worse. Thousands are in shelters. Authorities warn against the effects of 35-degree heat on construction workers.

| 10/07/2018
| VATICAN – JAPAN

The Son of God overturns every human scheme: it is not the disciples who washed the feet of the Lord, but the Lord who washed the feet of the disciples. This is a cause for scandal and disbelief, not only in that era, in every age, even today ". Francis also jokingly refers to the world cup. "I see Brazilian flags - he said. Take courage - he added - there is always next time! ".

| 08/07/2018
| VATICAN

Francis is in Bari, Italy, together with the Catholic and Orthodox patriarchs of Middle Eastern Churches for a day of prayer for peace. "We want to give a voice to those who have none, to those who can only wipe away their tears. For the Middle East today is weeping, suffering and silent as others trample upon those lands in search of power or riches".

| 07/07/2018
| VATICAN-MIDDLE EAST

At the end of a closed-door meeting with leaders of the different Christian realities, Francis said that "war is the offspring of power and poverty. It is defeated by renouncing the logic of supremacy and eradicating misery". Many conflicts have also been fomented by forms of fundamentalism and fanaticism. Equal rights for all citizens, whatever their faith.

| 07/07/2018
| VATICAN-MIDDLE EAST
by Vladimir Rozanskij

The millions of refugees in Lebanon, rebuilding Syria, the drama of migrants, collaboration between the Churches: an interview of the "Secretary of State" of the Moscow Patriarchate a few hours after the ecumenical prayer meeting in Bari, together with Pope Francis and the patriarchs of the East.

| 07/07/2018
| RUSSIA-VATICAN

Francis celebrates Mass on the occasion of the fifth anniversary of his visit to the island of Lampedusa. The "sterile hypocrisy of those who do not want to 'get their hands dirty'", is "a temptation that is also present in our day, which translates into a closure towards those who are entitled, like us, to security and a condition of dignified life, and that builds walls, real or imaginary, instead of bridges".

| 06/07/2018
| VATICAN
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by Suor Mary Prema

The disappearance of a child who was sold has "nothing to do with the Congregation of the Missionaries of Charity". The nuns are victims of "many myths [. . .] information distorted and false news” as well as “baseless innuendo". Sr Prema gives her version of events and defends her congregation. Only two weeks before, the authorities described the children’s home involved as an “excellent environment for the care of children”. Now they have been taken by social services.

| 17/07/2018
| INDIA
 
by Shafique Khokhar

Many Pakistanis are in Rome for the official celebration of his elevation. Political leaders, members of civil society groups and community leaders appreciate him. “He is a leader who has lived through the different and tormented phases of Pakistani history,” said one observer. He “is a strong voice for minorities in Pakistan,” said another.

| 29/06/2018
| PAKISTAN - VATICAN
 

On the solemnity of the Apostles Peter and Paul, Pope Francis blessed the palliums for the metropolitan archbishops appointed during the year (including three from Asia). He prayed together with the delegate of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople at the tomb of Peter. “We too have been brought back to life, healed, renewed and filled with hope by the anointing of the Holy One,” he said. “Like Peter, we [. . .] will always be tempted to hear those “whisperings” of the evil One, which will become a stumbling stone for the mission." He warned against "empty forms of triumphalism". Meanwhile, “millions of people continue to ask the question: “Are you he who is to come, or shall we look for another?

| 29/06/2018
| VATICAN
 

Pope Francis is hopeful about relations with China, which are not just based on diplomatic talks but also on cultural exchanges and friendship. For him, Card Zen is "a little scared".

| 20/06/2018
| VATICAN – CHINA
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