• Pope Francis speaks to journalists aboard the airplane heading to Iraq on 5 March 2021. Pope Francis landed in war-battered Iraq on the first-ever papal visit, defying security fears and the pandemic to comfort one of the world's oldest and most persecuted Christian communities. Picture: Andrew Medichini/AFP

    Pope updates canon law to address paedophilia by priests

    Revision of the penal sanctions within the Code of Canon Law followed a lengthy process involving input from canonist and criminal law experts and came after repeated complaints by victims of sexual abuse and others that the code's previous wording was outdated and intransparent.

  • FILE: Pope Francis. Picture: AFP

    Pope hails Mideast ceasefire, urges global prayers for peace

    A ceasefire between Israel and Hamas, the Islamist movement which controls the Gaza Strip, appeared to hold on Friday after 11 days of deadly fighting that pounded the Palestinian enclave and forced countless Israelis to seek shelter from rockets.

  • Pope Francis blesses blows his nose as he arrives on May 12, 2021 at San Damaso courtyard in The Vatican to resume his weekly outdoors general audience with the public after a six-month absence due to the coronavirus crisis. Picture: Tiziana Fabi / AFP

    Pope's joy as he resumes audience with public

    He greeted a baby, signed a book, donned a hat someone gave him and chatted with children who had painted him pictures as the faithful -- all in masks, unlike the vaccinated pontiff -- lined up to greet him.

  • FILE: Soon after being elected leader of the world's 1.3 billion Catholics in 2013, Francis vowed to continue efforts to fight corruption begun by his predecessor, Benedict XVI. Picture: Andrew Medichini/AFP

    Pope tightens Vatican's anti-corruption rules

    Senior managers and administrators at the Holy See, the central governing body of the Catholic Church, will have to declare they have no convictions or are not under investigation for corruption, terrorism or exploitation of minors.