12.17
Misc: Pope Francis Helped Broker More Open Relations With Cuba

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Barack-Obama-Pope-Francis

Pope Francis has helped the US to normalize its relations with Cuba. Read more from Time here: Pope Francis Helped Broker Cuba Deal, and America here: Vatican Assists Historic Shift. See photos of popes and Catholics in Cuba after the jump:

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6.5
Misc: Pope Francis may be the best Politician in the World

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Pope Francis and the Ecumenical Patriarch

Christopher J. Hale writes about Pope Francis‘ diplomatic skills for Time, “To reduce June’s meeting to an act of mere symbolism fails to understand the role religion can and should play in addressing difficult political and ethnic issues. Throughout world history, religious prophets have creatively navigated tense situations to advance peace and justice.” Read it here: Pope Francis may be the best Politician in the World

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11.27
Misc: Obama’s call to close Vatican embassy draws fire

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The Vatican

The Obama administration will shut down the U.S. embassy to the Holy See and relocate it on the grounds of the American embassy to Italy.  Former U.S. Ambassadors to the Vatican criticize the move, while the United States government claims it is for security reasons. John Allen has the story in The National Catholic Reporter here: Obama’s call to close Vatican embassy draws fire

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9.6
Misc: Vatican’s full-court press a remembrance of things passed

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Pope John Paul II

John Allen writes in National Catholic Reporter about how the Vatican’s pleas for diplomacy in Syria echo what Pope John Paul II did and said ten years ago when the U.S. was considering an invasion of Iraq: Vatican’s full-court press a remembrance of things passed

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