Standing Rock activists see Pope Francis as spiritual ally

Dakota Access Pipeline: Does Pope Francis have a position on the Dakota Access Pipeline? That’s one question he hasn’t been asked, and he might demur if pressed on such a specific issue.

Bishop resigns after disclosing he is father of two children

VATICAN CITY -- Los Angeles Auxiliary Bishop Gabino Zavala has resigned after disclosing to superiors that he is the father of two children.

The Vatican announced the bishop's resignation Jan. 4 in a one-line statement that cited church law on resignation for illness or other serious reasons.

SSPX head says Vatican statement needs changes

VATICAN CITY -- The head of the traditionalist Society of St. Pius X said a "doctrinal preamble" presented by the Vatican needs changes before it can be accepted as the basis for the group's reconciliation.

The statement by Bishop Bernard Fellay, superior of the society, appeared to hold out hope for further discussions with the Vatican, but it was unclear whether the Vatican would be willing to revisit the text.

"It is true that this doctrinal preamble cannot receive our endorsement, although leeway has been allowed for a 'legitimate discussion' about certain points of the (Second Vatican) Council. What is the extent of this leeway?" Bishop Fellay said in an interview posted on the society's website Nov. 29.

In September, when Bishop Fellay was handed the preamble, the Vatican did not publish the document but said it "states some doctrinal principles and criteria for the interpretation of Catholic doctrine necessary to guarantee fidelity" to the formal teaching of the church.

U.S. priest serving at doctrinal congregation is new nuncio to Ireland

VATICAN CITY -- Pope Benedict XVI has named U.S. Msgr. Charles J. Brown, a longtime official of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, as the new apostolic nuncio to Ireland. With the appointment, he was named archbishop of the titular see of Aquileia.