Vatican

Jesus manger: Relic returns to Bethlehem in time for Christmas

Pope Francis ordered the return of the thumb-sized relic from Rome's Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore as a gift.

The relic had been in Rome since the 7th Century.

It was briefly put on display in Jerusalem before continuing its journey to Bethlehem to coincide with the start of Christmas celebrations there.

The relic, encased in an ornate stand, was welcomed to Bethlehem on Saturday by a procession of marching bands and taken to the Church of St Catherine, next to the Church of the Nativity where tradition says Jesus was born.

India Catholic nun 'denied justice' by Vatican

Sister Lucy Kalappura said she was disappointed by a Vatican decision to reject her appeal against her dismissal from the Franciscan Clarist Congregation (FCC) in Kerala state.

She said she would not leave the convent and now plans to go to court.

Sister Lucy took part in protests against Bishop Franco Mulakkal in 2018.

He was later arrested over allegations he repeatedly raped a nun between 2014 and 2016. The bishop denies all the charges against him.

Pope addresses Pacific Islands Forum leaders

Meeting some members of the Pacific Islands Forum in the Vatican, the Pope shared the concerns of those exposed to frequent extreme environmental and climate events, and the impact of rising sea levels and the continuous deterioration of the barrier reef.

He blamed many of the causes of this “environmental decay” on the short-sighted human activity… connected with certain ways ‎of exploiting natural and human resources.

Vatican climate change meeting 'big deal' for Pacific

Mr Shaw and Pacific Peoples Minister Aupito William Sio are representing New Zealand at climate talks in Germany, and on the way there had an audience with Pope Francis at the Vatican.

The COP23 conference in Bonn is being convened under the presidency of Fiji, giving the international meeting a decidedly Pacific feel and focus.

Top Vatican official to plead not guilty to sex assault charges

Cardinal George Pell faced the Melbourne Magistrates Court Wednesday for his first hearing since the charges were made by Victoria Police last month.

The 76-year-old, who has consistently and strenuously denied the charges, has been given a leave of absence from his role at the Holy See as Secretariat for the Economy while he fights the case in the city where he was once Archbishop.

A huge media scrum followed Pell as he entered and exited the court house, requiring police officers to help clear the way for the cardinal.

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Vatican bans gluten-free bread for Holy Communion

In a letter to bishops, Cardinal Robert Sarah the bread - known as the host - was allowed to be low-gluten.

But he said there must be enough protein in the wheat to make it without additives.

The new rules were needed because the bread was now sold in supermarkets and on the internet, the cardinal said.

Roman Catholics believe bread and wine served at the Eucharist are converted into the body and blood of Christ through a process known as transubstantiation.

The Pope and President: Unpredictable pair finally meet

There, at the Apostolic Palace, Trump met with Pope Francis -- finally.

It's a meeting millions have been waiting for, an encounter between two of the world's most intriguing and complex characters: The holy man in white who preaches good news to the poor and the brash businessman in the dark suit who embodies American extravagance.

Why is the Vatican at a tech conference?

His presence here marks the first time the Vatican has attended the South by Southwest Interactive conference, and their panel - titled Compassionate Disruption - is one of this year's most talked about events.

"In a world where increasingly [we're] not invited to part of conversations, I think if people are interested in having us, we're delighted to be here.

"I want to learn and get a feeling for what are the things that are driving a generation of people who are in many ways shaping the world as we know it.

He glanced around the room.

Vatican to hear from former altar boy accusing Guam Archbishop of abuse

Reports say groups of Catholics plan to be there to show support for Roland Sondia and other abuse survivors.

Archbishop Apuron is undergoing a canonical trial sparked by allegations he raped and sexually abused altar boys in the 1970s.

Vatican policy dictates only the Vatican can investigate bishops and archbishops accused of sexual abuse.

At least 17 sexual abuse lawsuits have been filed against Archbishop Apuron, other clergy members and the Archdiocese of Agana.

Vatican defends China invite to organ trafficking summit

The head of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences (PAS) admitted he did not know whether the practice was continuing but said he hoped to encourage change.

Human rights groups say China is still using executed prisoners as a source of organ transplants.

Beijing says forced organ harvesting ended in 2015.

But the group Doctors Against Forced Organ Harvesting (DAFOH) said China's participation was compromising the conference and the PAS should reject its claim as no independent inspection had taken place.