Pope Francis began yet another general audience catechesis on St. Joseph, saying “we now consider him as the patron of a happy death. This traditional devotion was born of the Church’s meditation on Joseph’s own death, comforted by the presence of the Blessed Mother and the Lord Jesus. Today we tend to avoid the thought of our own death, yet our faith in the Risen Jesus invites us not only to be unafraid of death, but to accept it with trust in Christ’s promises.” (Vatican media photo)

Francis explained that, “our relationship with death is never about the past, but always about the present. The so-called ‘feel-good’ culture tries to remove the reality of death, but the coronavirus pandemic has brought it back into focus in a dramatic way. So many brothers and sisters have lost loved ones without being able to be near them, and this has made death even harder to accept and process.”

“The Christian faith is not a way of exorcising the fear of death; rather, it helps us to face it,” said the Pope.

“It is only through faith in resurrection that we can face the abyss of death without being overwhelmed by fear. Not only that: we can restore a positive role to death. Indeed, thinking about death, enlightened by the mystery of Christ, helps us to look at all of life through fresh eyes. I have never seen a moving van following a hearse! It makes no sense to accumulate if one day we will die. What we must accumulate is charity, and the ability to share, not to remain indifferent when faced with the needs of others.”

“Or, what is the point of arguing with a brother, with a sister, with a friend, with a relative, or with a brother or sister in faith, if then one day we will die? Before death, many issues are brought down to size. It is good to die reconciled, without grudges and without regrets!”

Francis spoke about “the quality of death itself, of pain, of suffering. Indeed, we must be grateful for all the help that medicine endeavours to give so that, through so-called “palliative care,” every person who is preparing to live the last stretch of their life can do so in the most human way possible. However, we must be careful not to confuse this help with unacceptable drifts towards euthanasia. We must accompany people towards death, but not provoke death or facilitate assisted suicide.”

Indeed, said the Holy Father, “Indeed, life is a right, not death, which must be welcomed, not administered. And this ethical principle applies to concerns everyone, not just Christians or believers.”

The Pope and faithful present at the audience then prayed a Hail Mary for the dying and those who are experiencing bereavement.


During the general audience on Wednesday, the Pope described war as “madness” and appealed for dialogue as a way of overcoming tensions and threats of conflict in Ukraine.

By Vatican News staff reporter

In his remarks, the Pope thanked all the communities who joined in prayer for peace in the country on January 26.

“We continue to implore the God of peace that tensions and threats of war be overcome through serious dialogue, and that the Normandy format talks may also contribute to this end. Let us not forget: war is madness.”

Diplomatic efforts

Tensions between Russia and Ukraine have been ongoing for years. Most recently, Russia began moving troops and military equipment near its border with Ukraine late last year, raising concerns of a potential invasion. In the latest developments, diplomatic efforts have been gathering pace in a bid to defuse the situation.

Following talks with President Vladimir Putin, French President Emmanuel Macron said on Tuesday he believed steps can be taken to de-escalate the crisis and called on all sides to stay calm.

Both Putin and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy had told him they were committed to the principles of a 2014 peace agreement, he said, adding that this deal, known as the Minsk accords, offered a path to resolving their ongoing disputes.

Meeting German Chancellor Olaf Scholz later in Berlin, both Macron and the chancellor said, “Our common goal is to prevent a war in Europe.”

Macron and Scholz also met in Berlin with Polish President Andrzej Duda. The French presidency said after the talks the three leaders expressed their joint support for Ukrainian sovereignty.

Threatened Sanctions

The United States and European Union have threatened Russia with sanctions if it attacks Ukraine. However, Moscow has largely dismissed new sanctions as an empty threat.

U.S. President Joe Biden warned on Monday that if Russia invaded Ukraine, “there will be no longer Nord Stream 2,” referring to a newly built, as yet unopened gas pipeline to Germany.




With an Apostolic Letter motu proprio dated October 22, 2019 and released today by the Vatican, Pope Francis has changed the name of the Vatican Secret Archives to the Vatican Apostolic Archives.

The motu proprio starts: “Historical experience teaches that every human institution, even born with the greatest care and with vigorous and well-founded hopes of progress, fatally touched by time and yet, wanting to remain faithful to itself and to the aims of its nature, feels the need, not to change its proper appearance, but rather to bring its inspiring values into different eras and cultures and to make those updates that are convenient and sometimes necessary.”

The Apostolic Letter then outlines a history of the Vatican library, the archives, their mission and purpose and the priceless service both have given to the Church over the centuries:

“This long service rendered to the Church, to culture and to scholars all over the world has always earned the Vatican Secret Archives esteem and gratitude, growing all the more growing from Leo XIII to our day, and because of the progressive ‘openings’ of the documentation made available to the consultation (which from next March 2, 2020, at my disposal, will extend until the end of the pontificate of Pius XII), both because of the increase in researchers who are admitted to the Archive on a daily basis and helped in every way in their research.”

Pope Francis then writes: “However, there is one aspect that I think may still be useful to update, reaffirming the ecclesial and cultural goals of the Archive’s mission. This aspect concerns the very name of the institute: Vatican Secret Archives.

“Born, as mentioned, from the Bibliotheca secreta of the Roman Pontiff, or rather from the part of codes and scriptures more particularly owned and under the direct jurisdiction of the Pope, the Archive was first titled Archivum novum, then Archivum Apostolicum, then Archivum Secretum (the first attestations of the term date back to around 1646).

“The term Secretum, which came to form the proper denomination of the institution, prevailed in the last few centuries and was justified because it indicated that the new Archive, wanted by my predecessor Paul V around 1610-1612, was none other than the private archive, separate, reserved by the Pope. So this is how Popes wanted to define it and scholars today still call it, without any difficulty. This definition, moreover, was widespread, with a similar meaning, in the courts of the sovereigns and princes, whose archives were properly defined as secret.”

Thus, writes the Holy Father, “Solicited in recent years by some esteemed prelates, as well as by my closest collaborators, I also heard the opinion of the Superiors of the same Vatican Secret Archive, (and) with this my Motu Proprio, I decide that: from now on the current Vatican Secret Archives, while changing nothing in its identity, its structure and its mission, is called the Vatican Apostolic Archives.”

Francis closes the Apostolic Letter by noting that, “the new name highlights the close link of the Roman See with the Archive, an indispensable tool of the Petrine ministry, and at the same time underlines its immediate dependence on the Roman Pontiff, thus as already happens in parallel for the name of the Vatican Apostolic Library.”


Representatives of the Abrahamic monotheistic religions condemn euthanasia and assisted suicide, and encourage palliative care everywhere and for everyone.

By Robin Gomes (vatiannews)

“We oppose any form of euthanasia – that is the direct, deliberate and intentional act of taking life – as well as physician-assisted suicide – that is the direct, deliberate and intentional support of committing suicide -because they fundamentally contradict the inalienable value of human life, and therefore are inherently and consequentially morally and religiously wrong, and should be forbidden without exceptions.”

Representatives of the Abrahamic religions made the statement in a position paper that they signed and released in the Vatican on Monday regarding end-of-life issues, such as euthanasia, assisted suicide and palliative care.

The term, Abrahamic monotheistic religions, derives from the Old Testament biblical figure Abraham who is recognized by Jews, Christians, Muslims and others.

Euthanasia, physician-assisted suicide – morally and religiously wrong
“Euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide,” they declared, “are inherently and consequentially morally and religiously wrong and should be forbidden with no exceptions.” As such, they categorically condemned any pressure upon dying patients to end their lives by active and deliberate actions.

They wrote, “Care for the dying, is both part of our stewardship of the Divine gift of life when a cure is no longer possible, as well as our human and ethical responsibility toward the dying (and often) suffering patient.”

“Holistic and respectful care of the person,” they said, “must recognize the uniquely human, spiritual and religious dimension of dying as a fundamental objective.”

The person behind the declaration is Rabbi Avraham Steinberg of Israel who proposed the idea to Pope Francis, who in turn entrusted it to the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy for Life. Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, the president of the Academy, involved and coordinated a mixed inter-faith group to draft the declaration.

After the release of the position paper, the 30 signatories were received in audience by Pope Francis in the Vatican. Among them were some cardinals, rabbis, including David Rosen and Syamsul Anwar of Indonesia’s second-largest Islamic organization, Muhammadiyah.

Palliative care for all
The Abrahamic religions encouraged and expressed support for qualified palliative care everywhere and for everyone. “Even when efforts to continue staving off death seems unreasonably burdensome,” they wrote, “we are morally and religiously duty-bound to provide comfort, effective pain and symptoms relief, companionship, care and spiritual assistance to the dying patient and to her/his family.”

While calling for laws and policies that protect the rights and the dignity of the dying patient to avoid euthanasia and promote palliative care, they committed themselves to involve other religions and all people of goodwill.

Archbishop Paglia stressed the importance of the ecumenical and interreligious dimension of the joint initiative. He said it allowed them to discover areas of convergence and bring fruits of communion in order to render a service to all people in whom “we all see sons and daughters of God”.



My guest this week in Vatican Insider’s interview segment is Jesuit Fr. Tom Smolich, the international director of JRS, Jesuit Refugee Service. He has riveting stories about the JRS, explaining its history, where it serves, who the Jesuits and their countless volunteers help and how we should get to know and better understand who refugees actually are. Do you know, for example, that many men and women classified as refugees today are degreed people – doctors, teachers, etc. So listen and learn a lot!

Father Smolich also tells us about JRS’ recent a campaign to help a religious minority in Iraq and so much more. I ask Father about his great challenges and his greatest joys – memorable answers!

I took these photos at the JRS center in Rome, not far from the Jesuit international headquarters on Borgo Santo Spirito. I may have to go back and do an interview just about the crosses and crucifixes on one wall in Father’s office as the stories linked to each cross are also JRS stories – stories of refugee’s lives, dreams and hopes.

IN THE UNITED STATES, you can listen to Vatican Insider (VI) on a Catholic radio station near you (stations listed at or on channel 130 Sirius-XM satellite radio, or on OUTSIDE THE U.S., you can listen to EWTN radio on our website home page by clicking on the right side where you see “LISTEN TO EWTN.” VI airs at 5am and 9pm ET on Saturdays and 6am ET on Sundays. On the GB-IE feed (which is on SKY in the UK and Ireland), VI airs at 5:30am, 12 noon and 10pm CET on Sundays. Both of these feeds are also available on the EWTN app and on ALWAYS CHECK YOUR OWN TIME ZONE! For VI archives: (write Vatican Insider where it says Search Shows and Episodes)


In a meeting on Friday with representatives of Italy’s surgeons and dentists, Pope Francis spoke about encountering in their patients, persons who are unique in their dignity and fragility, and not just their illness.
By Robin Gomes (vatiannews)

Pope Francis on Friday urged doctors to reject the temptation to assist and support suicide and euthanasia, reminding them of the Hippocratic oath that calls on them to commit themselves to absolute respect for human life and its sacredness.

“Medicine, by definition, is a service to human life, which involves an essential and indispensable reference to the person in his spiritual and material integrity, in his individual and social dimension. …Hence medicine is at the service of man, of the whole man, of every man,” Pope Francis told some 350 representatives of the National Federation of the Orders of Medical Surgeons and Dentists of Italy.

Vision of the human person
He told them that illness is not a mere clinical fact restricted to medicine alone, but includes the condition of a person, the sick. In this human vision, he said, doctors are called to relate to the patient, taking into consideration his singularity as a person who has an illness, and not just the case of the illness the patient has.

This is why, the Pope said, it is important that “the doctor does not lose sight of the uniqueness of each patient, with his dignity and his fragility. …A man or a woman should be accompanied with conscience, intelligence and heart, especially in the most serious situations.”

Suicide, euthanasia
“With this attitude,” stated Francis, “we can and must reject the temptation, also induced by legislative changes, to use medicine to support a possible willingness of the patient to die, providing assistance for suicide or directly causing death by euthanasia.”

The Pope said that these are hasty ways of dealing with choices that are not, as they might appear, an expression of the person’s freedom, when they include getting rid of the patient as a possibility, or false compassion in the face of the request to be helped to anticipate death.

Sacredness of human life
In this regard, Pope Francis recalled the “New Charter for Health Care Workers” of the Vatican’s Pontifical Council for Pastoral Assistance to Health Care Workers that says: “There is no right to dispose arbitrarily of one’s life, so no doctor can become an executive guardian of a non-existent right.”

He also recalled his predecessor, Pope Saint John Paul II, who pointed to the intrinsic and indispensable ethical dimension of the health care profession of the Hippocratic oath, according to which “every doctor is asked to commit himself to absolute respect for human life and its sacredness.”




A French court has ordered doctors to resume life support for a quadriplegic man whose case has become central to the right-to-die debate in France.

Doctors had begun switching off life support for Vincent Lambert, 42, on Monday, before the court order.

Mr. Lambert has been in a vegetative state since a 2008 motorcycle accident.

His care has divided the country and his family. His wife has called for his feeding tubes to be withdrawn; his parents insist he be kept alive.

Mr. Lambert’s mother Viviane, 73, hailed the latest ruling as “a very big victory” in her struggle to maintain her son’s life support. “They are going to restore nutrition and give him drink. For once I am proud of the courts,” she said.

Doctors had earlier on Monday halted the nutrition and hydration Lambert receives, in line with the wishes of his wife and other relatives.

An earlier judicial ruling had said Mr. Lambert should be removed from life support and that process had begun before Monday evening’s dramatic reversal by the Paris Court of Appeal.


“In fully sharing what was stated by Archbishop Éric de Moulins-Beaufort of Reims, and by Auxiliary Bishop Bruno Feillet, in relation to the sad story of Mr. Vincent Lambert, we wish to reiterate the serious violation of the dignity of the person, which the interruption of food and hydration entails The ‘vegetative state’, in fact, was certainly a serious pathological condition, which however does not in any way compromise the dignity of the persons who are in this condition, nor their fundamental rights to life and care, understood as continuity of basic human assistance.

“Nutrition and hydration are a form of essential care that is always proportionate to the maintenance of life: feeding a sick person is never a form of unreasonable therapeutic obstinacy, as long as the person’s body is able to absorb nutrition and hydration, unless doing that causes intolerable suffering or is harmful to the patient.

“The suspension of these treatments represents, rather, a form of abandonment of the patient, based on a merciless judgment on his quality of life, expression of a culture of waste that selects the most fragile and defenseless people, without recognizing their uniqueness and immense value. The continuity of assistance is an inescapable duty.

“We therefore hope that effective solutions can be found as soon as possible to protect the life of Mr. Lambert. To this end, we assure the prayer of the Holy Father and of the whole Church.

Kevin Cardinal Farrell,
Prefect, Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life

Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia,
President, Pontifical Academy for Life


Some interesting stories today – and quite a variety: a CD of papal election music, showers in the Vatican for the homeless, an online catechism and a call against euthanasia from Germany.


The Vatican will provide three showers in St. Peter’s Square for homeless people to use, the papal almoner Archbishop Konrad Krajewski announced. He explained that the decision for the work that will begin on Monday was taken after a homeless man from Sardinia refused his offer to a free meal at a restaurant because he “smelled.”

The showers will be built within the public restrooms for pilgrims under St. Peter’s colonnades for the homeless to wash and change near the Apostolic Palace.

Many parishes in Rome in the neighborhoods most frequented by the homeless have been offered money from the Vatican to build similar facilities. The service will be available to all those who are near the Basilica.

“It is not easy because it is always easier to make sandwiches (for the homeless) than to build showering facilities,” Krajewski said.

The service will require volunteers and donations of soap, towels and clean underwear, Archbishop Konrad Krajewski, the papal almoner, told the American Catholic News Service. “We have to be evangelical, but intelligent, too.”

Several people living on the streets of Rome or in tents say it is not difficult to find a parish or charity that will give them something to eat, but finding a place to wash is much more difficult.

The news site Vatican Insider first reported the news that Archbishop Krajewski had asked the office governing Vatican City State to include showers in an already-approved project to remodel the public loos in St Peter’s Square.

The remodelling work and installation of the showers was scheduled to begin next week. The archbishop said the three shower stalls would be located in the public bathrooms a few steps north of Bernini’s Colonnade, just behind the Vatican post office. (CNS, Buenos Aires Herald)


Last Wednesday, Msgr. Massimo Palombella, director of the Sistine Chapel, presented Pope Francis with a CD: “Habemus Papam. La musica del Conclave (We Have a Pope. Music from the Conclave).” The CD contains the music used during the liturgical ceremonies surrounding the election of Pope Francis: The “Missa pro eligendo Pontifice,” (Mass for the Election of a Pope), the “Veni Creator” used during the entrance into the Sistine Chapel, the music of the Mass celebrated with the College of Cardinals the day after his election, the music of the inaugural Mass of Pope Francis and, for the first time, 11 minutes containing the announcement “Habemus Papam” and the first words of Pope Francis on the evening of March 13, 2013.

This morning, the CD – actually a double CD – was presented to the public by Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi, president of the Pontifical Council for Culture; Msgr. Palombella, Fr. Federico Lombardi, S.J., director general of Vatican Radio, and Mirko Gratton, director of the Classical Division of Deutsche Grammophon Italia, the agency that signed an exclusive contract with the choir. The second CD consists of studio recordings by the Sistine Chapel Choir of its characteristic repertoire, music composed throughout history for papal celebrations.

The double CD “Habemus papam”, on sale in Italy on November 11 and will be available in the rest of the world on November 28.. Msgr. Palombella said today that, “this publication is presented as the first historical documentation of the music of a Conclave They are all live recordings, with the qualities and limits that this entails.”

The Pontifical Choir is the oldest choral institution in the world and is composed of 20 permanent adult singers and around 30 child choristers. Normally performing at papal celebrations, the choir’s concert activity is directed exclusively towards evangelization and to the promotion of ecumenical dialogue. In September, the Choir made an historic tour in China, performing in Hong Kong, Macao and Taipei.

Fr. Lombardi highlighted the experience accumulated by Vatican Radio in the field of sound recording and broadcasting of numerous concerts in the Vatican, especially in the Paul VI Hall. He recalled the extraordinary 1937 Christmas concert in the Hall of Blessings, broadcast live to 23 countries, “directed by the Maestro Lorenzo Perosi, Msgr. Palombella’s predecessor, with the Pontifical Sistine Chapel Choir, recorded by Vatican Radio and broadcast with the help of German technology” (to read more:


The website of the USCCB – United States Conference of Catholic Bishops – has a special gift for Catholics, its online United States Catholic Catechism for Adults in both English and Spanish. The online catechism has a very workable search engine, easy index, allows pages to be bookmarked and the reader can even make notes. AND, readers can share a particular age on Twitter, Facebook, etc.

Click here to discover for yourself:

The website notes that, “The presence of the Catholic Church in the United States reaches back to the founding days of our country through the leadership of Archbishop John Carroll, the first Catholic bishop in the United States. His story, like other stories at the start of the chapters in the United States Catholic Catechism for Adults, gives us a glimpse into the lives of Catholics who lived out their faith throughout our country’s history. Each chapter in the United States Catholic Catechism for Adults includes stories, doctrine, reflections, quotations, discussion questions, and prayers to lead the reader to a deepening faith. The United States Catholic Catechism for Adults is an excellent resource for preparation of catechumens in the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults and for ongoing catechesis of adults.

Do you like the feel of turning paper pages with your fingers? You can also get the paper edition in bookstores and online.


“Dying with dignity means acting so that one can die with dignity, not deciding the time of one’s death,” said Msgr. Peter Neher, the president of Caritas Germany, in a message today addressed to the German Members of Parliament who, at the Bundestag this morning, startinged discussing euthanasia. According to Neher, “the discussion must be focussed on the way seriously ill and dying people may be supported well, because what matters is finding adequate pain treatment, good care and a good pastoral service.”

According to Caritas, it is the fear of pain, the loss of control, the shame for one’s sickness, the humiliation of being a burden on others and the fear of loneliness “that drive people to want to put an end to their lives.” Msgr. Neher said, “We must take such fears very seriously and give special support at this stage of life.” A solution may be outpatient palliative treatment, which must be funded by standard healthcare and (Germany’s) national health service. Outpatient palliative treatment “must be improved.” In his opinion, terminally ill people must be able to be treated at home. According to Msgr. Neher, “if the social revision of the concept of a liveable life makes one internalize that being sick means not being worth living, the fact one’s decision about euthanasia is a free decision and how free it is, is very questionable.”


To save you some time, here are some links to ordering Pope Francis’ Italian-language book, “Il Mio Breviario” (My Breviary), online. It is Kindle version only but you know you can read Kindle books on your iPad or other tablet. These links are for the US, the UK and Italy:

US – Kindle:

UK – Kindle:

ITALY – Kindle:


On its English language site with Vatican news. ANSA, the Italian news agency, reported today that “a senior Vatican official on Tuesday condemned the suicide of American brain cancer sufferer Brittany Maynard at the weekend. ‘We don’t judge people, but the gesture in itself is to be condemned,’ Ignacio Carrasco de Paula, president of the Pontifical Academy for Life, told ANSA. “Assisted suicide is an absurdity. Dignity is something different to putting an end to your own life’.”

ANSA noted that “Maynard, a 29-year-old American afflicted with terminal brain cancer, announced weeks ago that she was planning to end her life. The video Maynard posted on Youtube in conjunction with the non-profit Compassion & Choices, in which she announced her decision, has been viewed 9.8 million times and made her a key advocate in the US’s right-to-die movement.”


Pope Francis on Wednesday will receive the founder and leader of an Argentinian grandmothers’ association that seeks children stolen and illegally adopted during the country’s Dirty War, Vatican sources said Monday. The Abuelas de la Plaza de Mayo (Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo) were set up to track down grandchildren abducted from female prisoners who gave birth in secret detention centers during the military dictatorship of 1976-1984.

“We are proud of the Argentine Pope,” Estela de Carlotto told ANSA ahead of her audience with Francis. She will be bringing several family members, including Ignacio Guido, her grandson, the son of her daughter Laura, who was abducted while pregnant, tortured and killed by the military 36 years ago. While Laura’s bullet-riddled body was returned to her mother, Laura’s child was not. Estela recovered him in August this year, thanks to a DNA bank set up by families and survivors of the dictatorship.

“We will all be there, a total of 18 Carlottos,” she said. (


The Vatican newspaper, in its November 5 edition that is on newststands the afternoon of November 4, carried a front page editorial entitled “The Nonexistent Right,” which is a commentary on the legalization of euthanasia and assisted suicide. The following is my translation:

The editorial starts: “This is the great weakness of many Western societies, the fact that they confuse what is moral with what is legal. And what is no longer condemned by law quickly becomes the object of a right.” This sentence by Patrick Verspieren. Jesuit and bioethicist, is from the editorial of the latest edition of the magazine “Etudes” and refers to the legalization of euthanasia and assisted suicide in several countries.

Fr. Verspieren, in commenting the position of Corinne Van Oost, the author of a book published in Belgium in mid-September with the provocative title “As a Doctor and Catholic, I practice Euthanasia,” denounced the risk of the banalization or almost becoming a habit of morally unacceptable acts when they are permitted by the law. This, for a doctor – especially for those who seek to assure the dying the best possible conditions of life – represents the enormous risk of “losing the sense of transgression that every homicide represents” and of becoming accustomed to the idea that one can serve life through giving death. Fr. Verspieren’s words can also be read in a broader context with respect to the fundamental questions of bioethcs and bio-law (bio-right) that, often in a very emotional and not-meditated-upon fashion, run through our societies.

It has often been said that the law would tend to regulate several hidden practices with the goal of making them safer. The basis from which the legislator would move (act), in other words, (is) a behavior already present in society; hidden euthanasias, clandestine abortions, the use of drugs, to list only a few examples. The problem is that often to give “legal feasibility” to such behavior can end up – and this is what Dr. Verspieren says clearly – making them also “morally acceptable,” demolishing in the eyes of many, and what is more, in the name of the law, the last obstacles to their realization. It is as if one had started a vicious cycle of extreme consequences: this would rapidly become a “right” which, until not long ago, was illegal. Just as quickly the law would lose its proper educational function, truncating all moral reference, and medicine would find itself overwhelmed by its own deontological principles.

It is clear – as can be seen in the words of both Patrick Verspieren and Dr. Van Oost – that apparently it is easier to give in to the wishes of society, even if obscure, than to refer to clear moral principles that have been and should continue to be the founding pillars of law in so-called evolved countries. It is also clear that, to second (give in to) such wishes by bending to presumed nonexisting rights can, on the one hand, push the law to go in the same direction and, on the other hand, generate a sense of profound suffering and anxiety. “To practice euthanasia,” says Van Oost, “means risking becoming accustomed to it. As the years pass, I do so with ever less fear, but I also have the impression of being the first to lose. As a doctor and as a Christian.”

The doctor and the legislator have equal responsibilities and are both called to have courage, the courage to go in the right direction. Breaking that vicious cycle that tends simply to legitimize and, in the end, to incentivize every desire.


Forum 18 News Service reports that, “Russia’s Federal Migration Service is not extending residence permits for foreign citizens who have been working for Crimean religious communities, leaving Simferopol’s Roman Catholic parish without its senior priest, Polish citizen Fr. Piotr Rosochacki, who had worked in Crimea for 5 years. All other Catholic priests and nuns will have to leave by the end of 2014. Similarly, almost all Turkish Muslim imams and religious teachers have been forced to leave Crimea.

“The Federal Migration Service in Crimea told Forum 18 News Service that only registered religious communities can invite foreign citizens. No Crimean religious communities have registration, and under a Russian law that entered into force on 1 July all religious communities must apply for re-registration by 1 January 2015. There is uncertainty about what will happen to applications from communities under bodies outside Crimea or Russia – including Crimea’s Armenian Apostolic, Old Believer, Moscow Patriarchate, Roman Catholic and Kiev Patriarchate parishes.

(Forum 18 News Service, as it says on its website, “is named after Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the similar Article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, a core international human rights treaty. We work for freedom of religion or belief for all on the basis of these articles. Article 18, Universal Declaration of Human Rights: “Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.”)