For 20 years, Las Patronas have tossed meals to migrants riding atop trains passing through their hamlet of cane and coffee farmers in Veracruz state.
At a press conference on Ash Wednesday, the Cologne archdiocese revealed assets of 3.35 billion euros ($3.82 billion) at the end of 2013.
The Middle East is suffering a "Way of the Cross" that is the greatest tragedy since World War II, Melkite Catholic Patriarch Gregoire III Laham said in a Lenten message about suffering.
He said the church, despite its efforts, is having difficulty meeting the growing needs it faces in the region.
"We fail in front of the suffering of our people in all walks of life, Christians and Muslims. It's a universal suffering," he said.
Cardinal Joseph Zen Ze-kiun, retired bishop of Hong Kong, protested at the Chinese Liaison Office in the city and asked the whereabouts of Bishop Cosmas Shi Enxiang of Yixian, who was said to have died in detention.
Despite democratic reforms and international pressure that have pushed Myanmar to improve its human rights record in recent years, religious freedom remains heavily constrained across the country.
The persecution of the Rohingya Muslim minority in this majority Buddhist country has attracted much international media and foreign policy attention. But in Chin State, along Myanmar's northwest border, a predominantly Christian population faces its own challenges and restrictions.
Christianity is not a set of prohibitions, but a "project for life" that can lead to true happiness in building better relationships and a better world, Pope Francis told Catholic young people.
"Do you realize how much you are worth in the eyes of God?" the pope asked youths in his annual message for local celebrations of World Youth Day. "Do you know that you are loved and welcomed by him unconditionally?"
Eco Catholic: More than 40 countries plan to participate in the Lenten Fast for Climate Justice. Find out when your country's fasting day is.
Global Sisters Report: A new blog brings you stories, notes and thoughts about women religious doing good work in Africa.
Pope Francis on Monday denounced the brutal slayings of 21 Coptic Christians in Libya by militants linked to the Islamic State, saying "they were assassinated just for being Christian."
"The blood of our Christian brothers is a witness that cries out," Francis said in off-the-cuff remarks during an audience with an ecumenical delegation from the Church of Scotland.
The pope, switching to his native Spanish, noted that those killed only said, "Jesus help me."
The Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops has invited dioceses to prepare for the worldwide Synod of Bishops with a set of questions on marriage and family life, but the conference said any questionnaire results will remain private.