Europe, populists and the holy spirit

Strike leader, Nobel Peace Prize winner, state president: Lech Walesa turns 75 this Saturday. In the interview, he talks about populism, migration and the role of the Catholic Church in social change.

Angelus with Pope Francis © Giuseppe Lami

A "serious danger" if God is instrumentalized, Pope Francis said – not alluding directly to the election campaign in Italy – but to temptations in the Church.

Kurt Beck reacted indignantly to the question of power. "It’s about a difficult question of content and not about this downright harebrained classification right, left, above, below, in front, behind," the SPD leader said. It was "nonsensical" to debate whether one wing had prevailed. It was 0.40 a.m. Monday morning, Beck had previously spent more than four hours discussing rail privatization with state and district chairmen.

From protestant to cardinal

Lars Anders Arborelius, Catholic Bishop of Stockholm © Julia Rathcke (KNA)

Pope has appointed five new cardinals. One of them is Lars Anders Arborelius from Sweden. "I think this is a sign," Bishop Arborelius tells our site interview.

A good year before the increase in the retirement age, the Bundestag is today discussing the opportunities for older workers. Federal Minister of Labor von der Leyen wants to stick to the much-criticized pension at 67. The opposition does not see the preconditions for it given.

With a Mass for the sick and disabled, Pope Benedict XVI. Ended his stay in the southern French pilgrimage site of Lourdes on Monday. On the forecourt of the Basilica of the Pilgrimage, he called for trust in the help of the Blessed Mother. Marian devotion is not "pious infantilism," Pope said about 50 years ago.000 participants in the service. It is an expression of spiritual maturity and of the insight into one's own weakness and poverty before God. The smiling face of Mary reflects the dignity of being a child of God, which never leaves even sick people, Benedict XVI emphasized. The Church is obliged to be as attentive as Mary to those who suffer, he said.

In a gesture that is unusual for popes, Benedict XVI. during the celebration, ten people received the sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick. He anointed the foreheads and hands of six women and four men of different nationalities and spoke to them of Christ's assistance. Suffering can shake the foundations of trust and make us despair of the value of life, the pope said in his homily. "In all humility, I want to say to all who suffer, who struggle and who are tempted to turn their backs on life: Turn to Mary! In the smile of the Virgin lies mysteriously hidden the strength to fight against illness and for life. In her, too, is found the grace to leave this world without fear and bitterness, in the hour that God has appointed."At the spring of Lourdes, visited by so many sick people, Mary leads the faithful to her Son as the "only source of salvation".". Christ is not a doctor according to secular understanding, the Pope said. "To heal us, he does not remain outside the suffering experienced."Christ bears the suffering together with the sick and breaks the isolation of pain. In this way, the sick person will be conformed to Christ and will participate in the new creation.

Visited the hospital chapel

Religious hatred breeds destruction and violence

Chile, Santiago: A statue of a saint burns after protesters set fire to the church of San Francisco de Borja. © Esteban Felix/AP

The international Catholic relief organization "Aid to the Church in Need" has condemned the violent attacks on churches in Santiago de Chile. Two houses of worship there were attacked, vandalized and set on fire by protesters on Sunday.

Bishops lodge protest

Patient holds cards with images of saints in her hand © Corinne Simon (KNA)

In the Australian state of Australia, a law on assisted suicide has come into force. Catholic bishops protest in the form of a pastoral letter. Criticism and rejection also comes from the medical profession.

A warning voice and moral authority

New synagogue in Berlin © Karin Wollschlager (KNA)

Moral authority, important companion in public debates and admonishing voice: Politicians have paid tribute to the Central Council of Jews on the occasion of its 70th anniversary. This Tuesday, the organization celebrates its anniversary with a ceremony.

20 nuclear bombs have been stored at the airbase in Buchel, Palatinate, since the Cold War. The church wants to send a signal against nuclear weapons through a day of action. Margot Kabmann is also on site.