Pope Francis names Manila's Cardinal Tagle 'red pope' (Vatican News) Pope Francis named Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, 62, as prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, which is responsible for the appointment of bishops in mission territories. Cardinal Tagle succeeds Cardinal Fernando Filoni, 73, the congregation’s prefect since 2011. Cardinal Filoni, in turn, was appointed the new Grand Master of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, succeeding Cardinal Edwin O’Brien, 80.
Pope entrusts sinners to Immaculate Mary (Vatican News) Following a custom that dates back several decades, Pope Francis left the Vatican on December 8 and traveled to the Piazza di Spagna in Rome, where he offered an act of veneration to the Blessed Virgin Mary at the Column of the Immaculate Conception (video).
Peoria official decries Rochester diocese's actions in Sheen beatification (Sheen Foundation) “Constantly the Diocese of Rochester calls for greater caution, but it is hard not to think that they simply act to sabotage the Cause,” said Msgr. James Kruse, the Diocese of Peoria’s director of canonical affairs and former vicar general, as he discussed conversations he has had with Rochester diocesan officials in recent months. On December 3, the Diocese of Peoria announced that the Vatican was postponing Archbishop Fulton Sheen’s beatification.
Justice and charity: Pope pays tribute to importance of notaries (Vatican Press Office) “The notary, in order to be consistent with his profession, will strive to nurture a sincere sensitivity to the dignity and rights of the people who turn to him; he will not fail to defend as indispensable principles all that is right and all that is true, without forgetting charity, the principal virtue necessary in interpersonal relationships,” the Pope said to the members of Italy’s Cassa Nazionale del Notariato [National Notarial Fund] on the 100th anniversary of its foundation.
Slovak premier meets with Pontiff (Vatican Press Office) Pope Francis met on December 9 with Prime Minister Peter Pellegrini of Slovakia. Their conversation centered on Church-state relations, the treatment of religious and ethnic minorities, and European affairs generally, with a special focus on Ukraine.
Majority of Belgium's parish priests are over 75 (SIR) According to the report, “the number of lay people in Belgium who have received a mandate from the bishops to serve parishes has exceeded the number of serving priests: 2,038 lay people compared to 1,940 diocesan priests (of whom 51% are over 75).”
Nicaraguan bishop raps government intimidation (Fides) Bishop Abelardo Mata of Esteli, Nicaragua, has criticized the government for attempts to intimidate the Church— for instance by ringing his cathedral with police officers— and indicated his support for young people protesting government policies in “a strong call to their conscience.”