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World news in brief

09 September 2022


Pilgrims gather in the rain in Saint Peter’s Square, on Sunday, as Pope Francis presides over the beatification Mass of Pope John Paul I

Pilgrims gather in the rain in Saint Peter’s Square, on Sunday, as Pope Francis presides over the beatification Mass of Pope John Paul I

John Paul I beatified in St Peter’s Square

POPE FRANCIS presided on Sunday at the beatification mass of Pope John Paul I, in St Peter’s Square, Rome, where 25,000 pilgrims gathered in the rain. It was celebrated by the Prefect of the Dicastery for the Causes of Saints, Cardinal Marcello Semeraro. John Paul I’s pontificate, from 26 August 1978 to his death 33 days later, was among the shortest in papal history. In his homily, Pope Francis said: “With a smile, Pope John Paul managed to communicate the goodness of the Lord. How beautiful is a Church with a happy, serene, and smiling face, that never closes doors, never hardens hearts, never complains, or harbours resentment, does not grow angry or impatient, does not look dour or suffer nostalgia for the past.”


Churchpeople’s abuse a monstrosity, Pope says

THE Roman Catholic Church is suffering because churchpeople continue to commit sexual abuse and others abuses of their authority and power, Pope Francis has said. In an interview with CNN Portugal, recorded in August, but broadcast on Monday evening, he said: “Abuse by churchmen and churchwomen — abuse of authority, abuse of power and sexual abuse — is a monstrosity, because the churchman or churchwoman, whether priest, religious man or woman, or layman or laywoman, is called to serve and to create unity, to make grow; and abuse always destroys.” He continued: “Abuse is a tragic reality of all times, but also of our time.” This had to be acknowledged to prevent institutional cover-ups, in the Church and elsewhere. “A priest cannot continue to be a priest if he is an abuser,” the Pope said.


Anglican Representative to UN moves on

THE Anglican Communion’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations since 2017, Jack Palmer-White, is to step down to be a senior director of the fund-raising consultancy the Good Partnership, it was announced on Wednesday. His post, originally to represent the Communion to the UN Institutions in Geneva, was expanded during his tenure to include all UN institutions, including those based in New York. It had been “a great honour” to serve, he said. “We have ensured that Anglicans are increasingly ‘in the room’ to speak directly and distinctively to Anglican experience and expertise, and that Anglican priorities and perspectives are well represented across the UN system.” The secretary-general of the Anglican Communion, the Rt Revd Anthony Poggo, said that Mr Palmer-White, who was previously Archbishop Welby’s parliamentary assistant, then social- and public-affairs adviser, had “increased the number of delegations, drawn from across our member Churches, to meetings of a growing number of UN institutions”.

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