God 'first of all wants mercy,' Pope tells pilgrims (Zenit) In his July 14 Sunday Angelus address (video), Pope Francis reflected on the parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37), the Gospel of the day. “If before a person in need you do not feel compassion, if your heart is not moved, it means that there is something wrong,” the Pope said. “If you cross a homeless person on your path, and you pass by without looking at him, or thinking ‘he’s drunk,’ do not ask yourself whether that man has had too much to drink, but whether your heart has stiffened and turned to ice.”
Pope appeals for political dialogue in Venezuela (Vatican News) “Once again I would like to express my closeness to the beloved people of Venezuela, who have been particularly hard hit by the continuing crisis,” Pope Francis said following his July 14 Angelus address. The Pope requested prayers for Venezuela, that God may “inspire and enlighten the parties involved, so that they can reach an agreement as soon as possible that will put an end to the suffering of the people for the good of the country and of the entire region.”
Investigations to continue in Vatican's Teutonic Cemetery (Vatican News) A search of Vatican tombs on July 11 yielded no clues about the disappearance of Emanuela Orlandi in 1983. The investigations in the cemetery will resume on July 20, the interim director of the Holy See Press Office said, after two ossuaries were discovered at another site in the Teutonic Cemetery.
In Sea Sunday message, Vatican calls for protection of seafarers' rights (Vatican News) Cardinal Peter Turkson, prefect of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, called on “international organizations together with proper government authorities and the different players of the maritime world to renew their efforts to protect and safeguard the rights of all people working at sea.” Pope Francis added, “Today we celebrate #SeaSunday, dedicated to seafarers and fishermen. I pray for them and their families, and I encourage every effort to protect and safeguard their human rights.”
Cardinal vicar of Rome calls on each parish to create 12-person missionary team (CNS) “Don’t go looking for those who have shown they are prudent, measured, and detail-oriented,” said Cardinal Angelo De Donatis, vicar general of Rome since 2017. “We do not need competent and qualified professionals.” Instead, he called for the inclusion of “people who draw outside the lines, people whom the Holy Spirit has made passionate about imperfection ... [who] are able to dream, to infect others with their dreams and want to experience something new.”
Guatemalan bishops oppose accord with US on asylum-seekers (Fides) The Catholic bishops of Guatemala have criticized a tentative agreement between President Jimmy Morales and US President Donald Trump, which would make Guatemala a “safe third country” for people seeking asylum in the US. The bishops said the agreement “would be seriously damaging for the good and sovereignty of the country,” and “would further sharpen the difficult situation of migrants in our country.”
Haiti's bishops announce year of prayer, adoration (Vatican News) Lamenting “evil endemic corruption,” the bishops said that “the misery has become so sharp and the insecurity so destabilizing that the tree of hope has been torn from the ground.” The Caribbean nation of 10.8 million (map) is 55% Catholic and 29% Protestant.
Venezuelan bishops decry 'illegitimate' government (Vatican News) The Catholic bishops of Venezuela have renewed their condemnation of “an illegitimate and bankrupt government,” and pleaded for “a return to the constitution.” In a public statement issued at the conclusion of their plenary meeting, the bishops reported multiple violations of human rights by the Maduro government, including arbitrary arrests, torture, mob violence, and brutality against civilians by the police and military.
Papal visit to Albano announced (Vatican News) In 2008, Pope Benedict XVI visited the Italian city of Albano Laziale, located 16 miles from Rome, to dedicate the cathedral’s new altar. In 2019, Pope Francis has made two apostolic journeys within Italy: to the shrine of Loreto (March 25) and to the earthquake-affected areas of the Diocese of Camerino-San Severino Marche (June 16).
Pope, Vatican newspaper mourn death of Vincent Lambert (@Pontifex) The French accident victim died on July 11 after nine days of starvation and dehydration. Following an earlier papal tweet and Vatican statement, Pope Francis tweeted, “May God the Father welcome Vincent Lambert in His arms. Let us not build a civilization that discards persons, those whose lives we no longer consider to be worthy of living: every life is valuable, always.” The Italian edition of L’Osservatore Romano also published a front page op-ed decrying his starvation.