In his final general audience to be streamed live from the papal library in the Apostolic Palace because of the coronavirus pandemic, Pope Francis continued his catechesis on healing the world and made the universal destination of goods and the virtue of hope his focus.

He asked the faithful to “welcome the gift of hope that comes from Christ,” especially in times when so many “risk losing hope.” It is Christ, he said, who “helps us to navigate the tumultuous waters of sickness, death and injustice, which do not have the last word over our final destination.”

“Dear Brothers and Sisters,” said the Holy Father, “In our continuing reflections on the effects of the current pandemic, we have seen how our world’s problems are becoming ever more evident and indeed more serious. Among these is social inequality, itself the fruit of an unjust global economy that creates boundless wealth for a relative few and greater impoverishment for the rest of our human family.”

Francis explained that, “In God’s plan, the earth was created as a garden, to be cultivated, not brutally exploited. As stewards of creation, we are called to ensure that its fruits, which are destined for all, are in fact shared by all. The Church reminds us that the principle of the subordination of private property to the universal destination of goods is the first principle of the whole ethical and social order.”

The Pope stated, “When millions of people lack access to primary goods, when inequality and lack of opportunity threaten the very fabric of society, and when greed endangers the very environment in which we live, none of us can stand by idly.”

He stressed that, “Christian hope, which trusts in the transforming grace of the risen Christ, impels us to work for the healing of our world and the building of a more just and equitable social order.

Concluding, Pope Francis invited the faithful to “think about the children”, so many of whom are suffering due to this unjust economic system. Many are dying, hungry, lacking the opportunity to an education. After the crisis, he stressed, we must be better.

In language greetings following the catechesis, Pope Francis had special words for the Polish faithful: “I cordially greet all the Poles. Dear brothers and sisters, today the Church in Poland celebrates the solemnity of the Black Madonna of Czestochowa. Carrying the memory of my visit to that shrine alive in my heart four years ago on the occasion of WYD, today I join the thousands and thousands of pilgrims who gather there, together with the Polish Episcopate, to entrust themselves, their families, all humanity to her maternal protection. Pray to the Blessed Mother, to intercede for all of us, and especially for those who in various ways suffer from the pandemic, and bring them relief. Please pray for me too. God bless you!”


SAINT MOTHER TERESA was born on August 26, 1910 so today is the 110th anniversary of her birth!

CARDINAL ALBINO LUCIANI, PATRIARCH OF VENICE WAS ELECTED TO THE PAPACY 42 years ago today, taking the name John Paul, the first Pope ever to have a double name. He was also the first pope to abandon the coronation ceremony, not wearing the triple tiara. The Eucharistic celebration thus became the first papal inauguration ceremony. He was the last Pope to use the sedia gestatoria, the elevated chair by which Popes were formerly carried into rooms. He was the first Pope born in the 20th century, and the last Pope to die in the 20th century, after a pontificate of only 33 days, dying of a heart attack on September 28. He was not known as John Paul I until Cardinal Wojtyla succeeded him and took the name John Paul II.

I was in Rome when he was elected. Years after his death, a priest friend in the Vatican told me that one day early in his brief pontificate, the Pope was signing a document. A priest assistant was at his side as he wrote, in Latin, Joannes Paulus I – John Paul I – and said “Your Holiness, you would only be John Paul I if there was a John Paul II. Pope Luciani looked up, smiling, and said, “There will be a John Paul II!”

For more: https://www.vaticannews.va/en/pope/news/2020-08/pope-john-paul-i-election-anniversary-42-years.html

GENERAL AUDIENCES WITH FAITHFUL TO RESUME SEPTEMBER 2:   The Prefecture of the Pontifical Household announced today that as of Wednesday, September 2, Pope Francis’s general audience will once again take place “with the participation of the faithful.” Following the hygiene directives issued by the competent authorities, the audiences for the month of September will be held in the Apostolic Palace’s San Damaso courtyard. They are open to anyone who wishes to participate and no ticket is necessary. Audiences will start at 9:30 am. Entry will be through the Bronze Gate under the right colonnade of St Peter’s Square starting at 7:30 am.

VATICAN NEWS FEATURED MELANIA TRUMP: “Republican Convention: Melania Trump appeals for racial unity – First Lady Melania Trump appeals for racial harmony and expresses compassion for those affected by the Coronavirus pandemic on the second day of the Republican party convention.” To read more: https://www.vaticannews.va/en/world/news/2020-08/republican-convention-melania-trump-appeals-for-racial-unity.html</a


Definitely today’s good news story from EWTN! https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=290962375534891


As he has been doing throughout the coronavirus pandemic, Pope Francis held a weekly general audience this morning in the papal library of the Apostolic Palace that was live streamed for the faithful around the world.

“Dear Brothers and Sisters,” he began, “in our reflection on the current global pandemic, we have seen that it has made us sensitive to an even graver virus affecting our world: that of social injustice, lack of equal opportunity and the marginalization of the poor and those in greatest need.”

He underscored that “Christ’s example and teaching show us that a preferential option for the poor is an essential criterion of our authenticity as his followers. Christian charity demands that, beyond social assistance, we listen to their voices and work to overcome all that hinders their material and spiritual development.”

Noting the worldwide desire for life to “return to normal,” Francis explained that, “Our desire for a return to normality should not mean a return to social injustices or to a delay of long overdue reforms. Today we have an opportunity to create something different: an ethically sound economy, centered on persons, especially the poor, in recognition of their innate human dignity.”

“The pandemic is a crisis” he continued, “and we do not emerge from a crisis the same as before: either we come out of it better, or we come out of it worse. We must come out of it better, to counter social injustice and environmental damage. Today we have an opportunity to build something different.”

“How sad,” the Holy Father commented, “it would be if, for example, access to a Covid-19 vaccine were made available only to the rich, and not to others in equal or greater need! It would be sad if this vaccine became the property of such and such a nation, not universal for all. The pandemic has laid bare the difficult situation of the poor and the great inequality that reigns in the world. And the virus, while it makes no exception among people, has found, in its devastating path, great inequalities and discriminations. And it has increased them!”

The Pope concluded by saying he hoped “the Gospel might inspire us to find ever more creative ways to exercise that charity, grounded in faith and anchored in hope, which can heal our wounded world and promote the true welfare of our entire human family.”

 “Starting from this love anchored in hope and founded in faith, a healthier world will be possible.”

FOR VIDEO OF GENERAL AUDIENCE: https://www.vaticannews.va/en/pope/news/2020-08/healing-the-world-an-opportunity-to-build-something-different.html



Siena has unveiled the extraordinary inlaid marble mosaic floors of its cathedral in as part of an eagerly-awaited annual event. The magnificent marble floor, covered with masonite sheeting for the rest of the year, can be visited from today until 7 October.

Visitors, who will be obliged to follow precautions to contain the spread of covid-19, will be able to admire the inlaid floor whose 56 panels were created between the 14th and 16th centuries. The interlocking “marble carpet” floor was described by Giorgio Vasari as “the most beautiful, largest and most magnificent floor that ever was made”.

For information about how to visit the stunning floor, which contains allegories, virtues, and scenes from the Old Testament, see the Duomo di Siena website. https://www.wantedinrome.com/news/italy-siena-cathedral-unveils-beautiful-mosaic-floors.html


Rome’s blockbuster dedicated to Raphael on the 500th anniversary of his death has been met with such demand from the public that organisers have taken the unprecedented decision to open the exhibition around the clock. The sell-out show, which had the misfortune to open just days before Italy shut all museums and went into lockdown due to the covid-19 pandemic, reopened on 2 June under strict visiting regulations.

The Scuderie del Quirinale controls the flow of visitors who are obliged to maintain social distancing, however this has not put off the public in the slightest, with the museum struggling to cope with the boom in demand for tickets. As the once-in-a-lifetime exhibition nears its final days, the museum will open to visitors from 08.00 until 01.00 from Monday 24 to Thursday 27 August, before opening 24 hours a day from Friday 28 until midnight on Sunday 30 August.

Billed as the greatest exhibition ever dedicated to Raffaello Sanzio da Urbino, the show features no fewer than 100 paintings by the High Renaissance master, with 40 masterpieces on loan from the Uffizi in Florence.

For full exhibition details see Scuderie del Quirinale website. https://www.wantedinrome.com/news/rome-opens-raphael-blockbuster-24-hours-a-day-to-cope-with-demand.html

Authorities at Rome’s Bioparco are ensuring the zoo’s residents are coping with the summer heat by providing the animals with swimming pools and refreshing frozen fruit. The Bioparco says that during the extreme heat the animals choose whether to go outdoors or stay in their shelters.

For those who venture outside there are new shaded areas as well as swimming pools for elephants, tigers, hippos, wolves and bears. Primates such as ring-tailed lemurs and macaques receive bamboo canes filled with yogurt and frozen fruit which, in addition to cooling them down, sharpens their food-finding skills, according to the zoo.



Local authorities ordered guests not to leave the Santo Stefano resort on Monday after the case was detected at the resort on Sardinia’s La Maddalena island. The region’s crisis unit conducted swab tests on some 470 vacationers and staff on Monday.

“We are waiting for the swabs to be processed, in the meantime we have arranged that no one leaves the resort,” stated regional health councilor Mario Nieddu.

Guests are allowed to move freely around the resort itself, but mustn’t leave, Italian media reports. Two guests reportedly tried to escape shortly after the lockdown was ordered, but were stopped by local police on their way to Olbia airport.