National Catholic Reporter

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Ukraine

Francis meets a tardy Putin, as U.S. official calls for tougher talk

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Russian President Vladimir Putin met with Pope Francis at the Vatican on Wednesday, in a visit being scrutinized for meaning and significance as Russia continues taking unilateral military action in Ukraine.

The Vatican press office released an unusually lengthy description of the encounter, saying the discussions between the two leaders were “dedicated principally to the conflict in Ukraine and the situation in the Middle East.”

Ukrainian Catholic leader invites pope, says visit could bring peace

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The head of the Ukrainian Catholic Church invited Pope Francis to visit the war-torn nation, saying it would help bring peace.

"It would be a prophetic gesture that would show the power of prayer and Christian solidarity, give us courage and hope and build a better future for everyone," said Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuk, major archbishop of Kiev-Halych.

How does one respond to a troubled world?

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I don't know about you, but I have been deeply troubled by what seems to be an unraveling of the world around us in so many different hot spots.

Just to name a few:

1. The escalation of violence in Ukraine, including the shooting down of a passenger airline with the loss of all passengers on board

2. The continuing loss of life and violence in Gaza and Israel

Ukrainian Catholic bishops thank world for prayers during transition

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Ukrainian Catholic bishops thanked people around the world for their prayers over the last six months and asked for continued prayers for peace in their country.

"The dignity that Ukrainians yearn for is not first and foremost material," said a message from the Permanent Synod of Bishops of the Ukrainian Catholic Church. "They seek a God-given dignity, a respect for their very being. Their right for self-determination, territorial integrity, cultural and especially ecclesial tradition has been violated brutally in the past and is demeaned today."

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