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Pope tends to Orthodox ties, Catholic minorities in Balkans

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis, who opened 2019 with trips to the Muslim world, is shifting gears to tend to Orthodox relations, with a delicate visit starting Sunday to the Balkan nations of Bulgaria and North Macedonia. Francis will also minister to the countries’ tiny Catholic communities and meet …

Vatican: Pope did not say there is no hell – BBC News

A top Italian daily did not accurately quote Pope Francis, the Vatican says. The Vatican has denied that Pope Francis told a well-known Italian journalist that “there is no hell”. The quote came in an article in Italy’s La Repubblica daily. But the Vatican said “no quotations” in the article …

Vatican defends membership for theologian over abortion flap

VATICAN CITY (AP) — The head of the Vatican’s bioethics panel is defending the decision to name as a member an Anglican moral theologian who has said that abortion could be condoned up until the 18th week of gestation. Monsignor Vincenzo Paglia spoke out Saturday after conservative commentators criticized the …

Knights of Malta elect temporary leader for reform period

VATICAN CITY (AP) — The ancient Knights of Malta religious order on Saturday elected a temporary leader during a period of reform after the last grand master was effectively ousted by Pope Francis. The secret ballot by 56 knights eligible to vote means the order will continue a period of …