ROME — Written between 1938 and 1944, and previously unreleased to the general public, the letters reveal desperation and fear. They reflect the humiliation, discrimination and confinement Jews were subjected to during a dark moment in European history. In one, a Milanese lawyer asks the Vatican to intervene in favorContinue Reading

MEXICO CITY — The murder of two Jesuit priests inside a church in Mexico this week stunned a country where frustration had been building for years over the government’s failure to stem a deluge of killing. But this time, the government faces pointed criticism from one of the nation’s mostContinue Reading

Pope Francis weighed in on Wednesday on a debate roiling the Roman Catholic Church in the United States, where bishops are considering denying Communion to politicians, like President Biden, who support abortion rights. “I have never refused the Eucharist to anyone,” Francis said, adding that bishops should be pastors, notContinue Reading

ROME — Pope Francis announced Sunday that he would create 21 new cardinals in August, selecting clerics from all corners of the world to reinforce the church’s global reach, as he has done with past choices to the rank of cardinal. “Let us pray for the new cardinals, that byContinue Reading

ROME — Italian bishops said on Friday that they would carry out a long-demanded investigation into clerical sexual abuse of minors and vulnerable persons, but victims and their advocates immediately said the plan fell short of what was needed. Seeking to address the concerns about the revelations of abuse thatContinue Reading

ROME — Cardinal Angelo Sodano, an Italian who rose to the pinnacle of the Roman Catholic Church as the Vatican’s top diplomat, ultimate power broker of the papal court and deeply influential dean of cardinals before seeing his reputation stained by his connection with the cover-up of sex abuse scandals,Continue Reading

VATICAN CITY — David Kertzer put down his cappuccino, put on his backpack and went digging for more Vatican secrets. “There’s an aspect of treasure hunting,” said Mr. Kertzer, a 74-year-old historian. Moments later he cut through a crowd lined up to see Pope Francis, showed his credentials to theContinue Reading

As Russia’s invasion of Ukraine unfolded, Patriarch Kirill I, the leader of the Moscow-based Russian Orthodox Church, had an awkward Zoom meeting with Pope Francis. The two religious leaders had previously worked together to bridge a 1,000-year-old schism between the Christian churches of the East and West. But the meeting,Continue Reading

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis approved spending up to one million euros to free a Colombian nun kidnapped in Mali, a cardinal told a Vatican court on Thursday, revealing previously undisclosed negotiations to secure her release. Cardinal Giovanni Angelo Becciu, formerly one of the Vatican’s highest-ranking prelates, said the popeContinue Reading

The first flurry of diplomats decamped from Kyiv in mid-February, well before shells began slamming into and around the historic city. The next wave of embassies packed up and left Ukraine’s capital a few weeks later, when the war began in earnest, moving their operations west and away from theContinue Reading