News/International

CARTAGENA, Colombia - Pope Francis capped a five-day trip to Colombia with a call for culture change in a country attempting to pursue a path of peace and reconciliation after decades of armed conflict and centuries of social exclusion.

In Cartagena, Pope prays for Venezuela, denounces modern slavery

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CARTAGENA, Colombia - At the Church of St. Peter Claver, a saint venerated throughout the Americas as a champion of human rights, Pope Francis offered special prayers for Venezuela and its people suffering in the midst of a huge political and economic crisis.

Be brave in finding new ways to live, share the faith, Pope says

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MEDELLIN, Colombia - In a city many think of as being synonymous with new directions for the Catholic Church, Pope Francis told Colombian Catholics faith is not measured by how well they follow rules, but by the depth of their prayer life and the degree to which it pushes them to share the Gospel.

On 'sacred ground' of suffering, Pope prays for reconciliation

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VILLAVICENCIO, Colombia - In a raw, honest prayer service where victims and perpetrators of violence stood under the gaze of a bomb-damaged crucifix, Pope Francis urged Colombians to summon the courage to make peace.

Be the first to take a step for peace, Pope says at Mass with victims

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VILLAVICENCIO, Colombia - If just one victim of Colombia's civil war forgives his or her aggressor, it can set off a chain reaction of hope for reconciliation and peace, Pope Francis said.

Church leaders pray for victims of quake

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CARTAGENA, Colombia - Church leaders prayed for Mexicans and Guatemalans affected by the magnitude 8.2 earthquake that struck the Pacific Coast.

Defend life, equality, unity, Pope tells Colombians

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BOGOTA, Colombia - Consolidating peace in Colombia will mean overcoming "the darkness" of inequality and a lack of respect for human life, Pope Francis said.

Pope urges bishops to contribute to peace as pastors, not politicians

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VATICAN CITY - Quoting celebrated Colombian author Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Pope Francis told the country's bishops he knows "it is easier to begin a war than to end one" and that, to succeed, Colombia needs bishops who are pastors, not politicians.

Pursue peace through social inclusion, Pope tells Colombian officials

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BOGOTA, Colombia - Pope Francis urged Colombians to put aside prejudice and pursue peace through social inclusion, fighting inequality and paying attention to the plight of the country's most marginalized populations, such as campesinos, Afro-Colombians and indigenous peoples.

Colombia youths must teach elders to forgive, to move on, Pope says

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BOGOTA, Colombia - As Colombia strives to build a lasting peace, the country's elders need the encouragement and insistence of young people, who believe with all their hearts that forgiveness is possible and grudges don't have to last for decades, Pope Francis said.

Irma cuts deadly path in Caribbean as church officials prepare response

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PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti - Hurricane Irma cut a deadly path through the Caribbean, leveling entire islands as it moved toward Florida Sept. 7, while Haiti prepared for a potential disaster.