Fr. Jerome Secillano.

Church lauds gov’t efforts, not means, to combat illegal drugs

Church leaders praise the efforts of the government to fight the proliferation of illegal drugs in the country but do not approve of the method used.

Malacañang Palace view from Pasig River

Palace: Pope’s remarks boost administration’s war on drugs

The remarks of Pope Francis against illegal drugs boosted the administration’s war on drugs, Malacañang Palace said on Sunday.

Pope Francis

Pope says governments have duty to fight drug traffickers

Pope Francis says it is the duty of governments to fight drug production and drug traffickers, who peddle "death."

Pope charmed by ‘undisciplined’ hearing impaired child

Pope Francis has praised the freedom of a hearing-impaired child who climbed onto the stage to play during the pontiff's general audience.

Bishop-elect Ronald Lunas of the Diocese of Pagadian. PHOTO COURTESY OF DXGN 89.9 SPIRIT FM-DAVAO/CBCP NEWS

Pope appoints Davao del Sur priest as new Pagadian bishop

DAVAO CITY--Pope Francis has appointed a priest from Davao del Sur as the new bishop of Pagadian in Zamboanga del Sur, the Catholic Bishop Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) reported on its website.

Pope Francis

Pope: The din of ‘ever more rich’ drown out cries of poor

Pope Francis is praying with thousands of poor people at St. Peter's Basilica and decrying that the “few rich” grow even wealthier.

God’s mercy and compassion is central to Pope Francis’ message

One of the early messages of Pope Francis was that the Church must become more pastoral and less dogmatic. God’s mercy and compassion continue to be central to Pope Francis’ message.

Rizal, Pope Francis – and the logic of the snake

In Chapter 36 of Rizal’s second, subversive novel, “El Filibusterismo,” we meet the ridiculous figure of Ben Zayb again, the Spanish journalist. He has just written a long article “reporting” the commotion at the wedding; when he is told by the Spanish censor that the article cannot be published, he says: “If only another crime is committed tomorrow or the day after!”

Saint Oscar Romero of El Salvador

Last Sunday, Oct. 14, or 38 years after his assassination on March 24, 1980, Archbishop Oscar Romero of El Salvador was declared a canonized saint of the Catholic Church, one of six individuals “raised to the altar” in solemn rites attended by tens of thousands in Rome. Pope Francis, who presided at the Mass along with hundreds of priests and bishops, wore the bloodied cincture or waistband of the martyred

San Romero

Long before his canonization, he was already being referred to as “San Romero” by people in Latin America. On Sunday, he was finally canonized, and might easily become one of the most popular, but also controversial, saints of our times, especially in Latin America and the Philippines.

A priest, married and hurting

Edgar A. Saco is a married priest who now works in the City Cooperative Development Office of Davao City. After reading my column last week, he sent me this open letter wishing to share his personal thoughts with our readers. I am pleased to provide him with my space in the newspaper.

My church in crisis

First, I was an Aglipayan. Shortly after my mother passed away, my surrogate mom who raised me as her own, had me rebaptized in the Catholic Church by Belgian missionaries. Since then, I have remained a Catholic although not the fervent, devout kind she would have wanted me to be.

U2’s Bono says pope’s ‘aghast’ about church sex abuse

VATICAN CITY (AP) — U2 frontman Bono has described Pope Francis as being “aghast” about sex abuse in the Catholic Church. The Irish singer met privately with Francis on Wednesday at the Vatican hotel where the pope lives, to discuss themes that Bono told reporters included “the wild beast that is capitalism” and sustainable development. […]

Pope Francis’ favorite ‘señora’ in Manila is now our lady in Lisbon

You know our woman in Lisbon, Ambassador to Portugal Celia Anna “Cookie” Feria, is anything but a stiff diplomat when she welcomes you to her turf with hardly any makeup, her hair in a messy bun. “Oh, call me Cookie,” she insists.


Egypt’s Coptic pope quits ‘waste of time’ Facebook

The head of Egypt's Coptic Church, Pope Tawadros II, has shut down his Facebook page, saying it was a "waste of time,” after the church ordered monks off social media.

LOOK: Richard Yap and family blessed to meet Pope Francis

Yap, his wife Melody, daughter Ashley and Dylan all went up to the Pope to be blessed by him.

Trump is the world’s most followed leader on Twitter; Pope comes second

US President Donald Trump is by far the most followed world leader on Twitter, with the Pope trailing him by some 4.5 million followers, a study showed Tuesday.

Vatican prays for seafarers, laments often poor working conditions

VATICAN CITY — The Vatican is calling attention to the plight of merchant seamen and fishermen who may face dismal working conditions and be kept from going ashore when their ships dock in foreign ports. Pope Francis marked the Catholic Church’s “Sea Sunday” by praying for the world’s estimated 1.2 million seafarers and their families […]

‘The danger is that in times of crisis, we look for a savior’

Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” With this line from John F. Kennedy’s 1961 inaugural address, a period of renewed hope was ushered in for the American people and the free world. This is relevant food for thought for us today.

Pope Francis’ preferred wine takes center stage

The grape varieties used for the wine at dinner were strange to me—Primitivo, Negroamaro, Fiano, Aleatico. But there would be time to ask the wine producer later about those.

Pope summons world oil execs to Vatican to talk climate change

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis will meet with some of the world's oil executives next week, likely to give them another moral nudge to clean up their act on global warming.Climate change policy and science experts are cautiously hopeful but aren't expecting any miracles or even noticeable changes.

Korean unity at Vatican? Not so fast, but pope cheers anyway

VATICAN CITY — South Korean taekwondo athletes have performed for Pope Francis, after a planned show of Korean unity at the Vatican fell apart when the North pulled out at the last minute. Pope Francis didn’t seem to notice or mind, thanking the athletes Wednesday for their exhibition “which was a show of the will […]

Italy, where food is divine

I have a confession to make: My sister and I are Cardinal Tagle “stalkers”.

Hooray, Pope Francis!

Your mantra for the week: “Every day I am looking younger and younger, feeling stronger and healthier in every way.” There are many ways for people to feel and look young—from cosmetic surgery to stem cell therapy, to new gadgets for procedures like Thermage, butt threading, and other physical approaches. But there are mental, emotional […]

Is Katy Perry hinting at rekindled romance with Orlando Bloom?

Katy Perry may have dropped a hint at her relationship status during an interview where she said she’s “spoken for.” The singer had been asked whether she would date a contestant during an interview on Entertainment Tonight, April 23. She rejected the idea and said, “No, I’m sorry I have been spoken for and speak […]

LOOK: Judy Ann Santos cooks for nuns in the Vatican

Juday and Ryan prepared a feast for the nuns, made up of pasta with shrimps, salad with berries, meat and fish, and leche flan.

Pope washes feet of Filipino prisoner in Holy Week ritual

Pope Francis washed prisoners' feet at a Rome jail on Thursday, including a Filipino, two Muslims, an Orthodox Christian and a Buddhist, once again choosing to celebrate Holy Thursday among Italy's incarcerated.

LOOK: Claudia Barretto roams around Italy in style

For the Holy Week break, Claudia Barretto jetted off to Italy for some adventure. The daughter of Marjorie Barretto and Dennis Padilla looked quite fashionable as she visited San Giovanni in Rome as posted on her Instagram Sunday. Showing her wit, she said, “My data isn’t the only thing Rome-ing.” View this post on Instagram […]

Pope praises Pyeongchang Olympics as bridge to peace

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis has praised the Pyeongchang Olympics for showing that sport can “build bridges between countries in conflict and give a valid contribution to peace.” Francis delivered the message during his general audience Wednesday ahead of the start of the Paralympics. Francis praised the paralympic athletes as “examples of courage, perseverance and […]

Chot likens PH Fiba World Cup hosting to Papal visit

Gilas Pilipinas head coach Chot Reyes proclaimed that basketball is considered as a religion in the Philippines, and when the country was chosen as one of the hosts for the 2023 Fiba World Cup he took it one step further. “We’re very happy, we will have the world’s best basketball players, some of the world’s […]

Cardinal cut: Pope’s tailor rushing orders from 4 new customers

Raniero Mancinelli cannot afford to drop a stitch. Pope Francis is creating five new cardinals next week and the race is on to have their scarlet robes ready in time.

Catholic priests in PH echo Pope’s call for daily prayers for peace

Pray for peace. At 1 p.m. last Thursday, Pope Francis invited everyone to dedicate a minute daily to reflect and pray according to one’s own religious tradition, and to commit to peace around the world. The worldwide minute of prayer marks the second anniversary when Pope Francis together with Israeli President Shimon Peres and Palestinian leader Abu Mazen prayed together for peace in the Middle East.

LOOK: Pope Francis’ glum photos with Trudeau, Trump amuse netizens

Just weeks after he met with United States President Donald Trump, the beloved pontiff once again showcased the same level of enthusiasm—or lack thereof—during a photo-op with Trudeau.

#KicksStalker: Pope Francis gets exclusive Jordan Vs from Michigan team

Michigan Air Jordan Retro 5’s for the Pope @Jumpman23 @UMichFootball #GoBlue #HAILRoma — Maurice Hurst Jr (@BigPappi73) April 26, 2017 Pope Francis has shunned away from the usual attire of the previous Catholic leaders and has opted to walk around in plain white shoes instead of the red ones his predecessors chose to wear. This […]

Vote against Duterte in Time poll to prevent more killings

You have an opportunity to save a life in the Philippines. Just go online and vote against Rodrigo Duterte in the Time Magazine poll for the 100 Most Influential People. Want to possibly prevent another poor Filipino from being slaughtered in a grisly campaign? Visit the Time site and click “No” on Duterte. You can […]

WATCH: 3-year-old girl playfully snatches Pope Francis’ hat

After receiving a kiss from the beloved Pontiff, the toddler was so smitten that she wanted to take a souvenir home with her.

McDonald’s crosses cardinals to offer ‘Big Vac’

ROME, Italy — McDonald’s is dishing up “hallowed” hamburgers after the Vatican backed it in a fight with cardinals over a new outlet at the foot of the tiny city state in Rome. Big Macs were being scoffed with glee Tuesday at the US fast food giant a stone’s throw from Saint Peter’s Square. Cardinals […]

Is business the cause of social ills?

In his First Apostolic Exhortation in 2013, Pope Francis said that the three challenges confronting the world today are: (1) “economy of exclusion,” (2) “the idolatry of money,” and (3) “the financial system which rules rather than serve.”

Pope imposes financial oversight for saints after abuses

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis has imposed new financial accountability regulations on the process for making saints after gross abuses were revealed. Francis issued norms Thursday that require external vigilance over the Vatican bank accounts created for canonization causes as well as regular budgeting and accounting to make sure donations are being used correctly. The […]

Pope prays for Schumacher recovery

Pope Francis prayed for racing legend Michael Schumacher on Thursday as he offered his backing for a Formula One-led road safety campaign aimed at reducing the number of children killed by cars. The prayer came after Francis was visited by Jean Todt, the president of the Formula One’s governing body FIA, who showed the pontiff […]

Aquino woos Euro investments

President Benigno Aquino III wrapped up a working visit to France on Tuesday with a series of meetings with prospective and current European investors before heading to Rome and the Vatican later that day on the final leg of his official visit to Europe.

November 6: A Church for the dirty

"Here I repeat for the entire Church what I have often said to the priests and laity of Buenos Aires: I prefer a Church which is bruised, hurting and dirty because it has been out on the streets ..."

November 5: “Our church doors should always be open”

“The Church is called to be the house of the Father, with doors always wide open. One concrete sign of such openness is that our church doors should always be open ..."

November 4: Disoriented in the Spirit

“It is true that this trust in the unseen can cause us to feel disoriented: it is like being plunged into the deep and not knowing what we will find. I myself have frequently experienced this."

November 3: “Death is in my thoughts”

In a series of revealing interviews he gave a few years before he became pope, Pope Francis described death as “a daily companion of mine.” Why is that? “I’m over seventy years old and the thread of life I have left on the reel isn’t long."

November 2:  Resurrection is an irresistible force

In “The mysterious working of the risen Christ and his Spirit,” the section in Evangelii Gaudium on the Resurrection as the source of the “mysterious” fruitfulness of the missionary enterprise, we can hear the voice of Pope Francis very clearly.

November 1: Our infinite sadness

Perhaps it is only to be expected that, in an apostolic exhortation that focuses on the joy of the Gospel, death is not a subject or a theme in itself. Death is discussed, when it is discussed, always in relation to the resurrection, or as the fate from which Jesus Christ saved us.