Catholic News Service

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Catholic News Service, serving since 1920 as a news agency specializing in reporting religion, is the primary source of national and world news that appears in the U.S. Catholic press. It is also a leading source of news for Catholic print and broadcast media throughout the world.

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Prayer and mission are the very breath of the Christian life, Pope Francis said.

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RYE, N.Y. (CNS) — Beyond their traditional roles as predictably quiet and often-beautiful places, "cemeteries have a huge opportunity to evangelize and a responsibility to stand for what the church represents," said Andrew Schafer, executive director for Archdiocese of Newark Catholic Cemeteries in New Jersey. People who come to a committal service in a cemetery may be encountering Catholic funeral tradition for the first time, or for the first time in many years.

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Seven months after a delegation of U.S. bishops quietly met with Iranian religious leaders, their efforts appear to be on track to continue a dialogue on nuclear weapons and the role faith leaders may have in influencing arms policies.

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VATICAN CITY (CNS) — The Vatican is not promising visitors to the Sistine Chapel more elbow room, but it is guaranteeing a cooler experience.

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The way Christians behave can either help and inspire others, or turn them away from ever following Jesus, Pope Francis said.

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CAPE TOWN, South Africa (CNS) — The agency will ensure that graves are marked so that families know where their loved ones are buried and that there is "one body in one grave," a church official said, noting that in the current crisis "this is not always the case." "We need to create ways for people to visit the graves of their loved ones and still be safe," CRS' Michael Stulman explained, noting that currently no funeral services are held in Sierra Leone and visits to cemeteries are not allowed.

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The Big Bang theory and evolution do not eliminate the existence of God, who remains the one who set all of creation into motion, Pope Francis told his own science academy.

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Exorcists, assigned to that ministry by their bishops, demonstrate the love and care of the church for "those who suffer because of the work of the devil," Pope Francis said in a message to the International Association of Exorcists.

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SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador (CNS) — Music and participation in a symphony orchestra are giving 240 students the chance to steer clear of violence that plagues their country. Its members come from poor families and public schools marked by gang feuds.

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Looking ahead to the October 2015 world Synod of Bishops on the family, Cardinal George Pell said the task for Catholics "over the next 12 months" is to explain "the necessity of conversion, the nature of the Mass," and "the purity of heart the Scriptures require of us to receive holy Communion."

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