pope francis

Christians around the world gathered on Sunday to mark the end of Holy Week and celebrate Easter.

Festivities took on many forms. While some worshippers reenacted the Passion of the Christ, others gathered for candlelit services or colorful processions.

Wrapping up an unprecedented Vatican summit, Pope Francis denounced the abuse of minors and called for an end to the Catholic Church's long history of covering up the scandal.

In a Mass on Sunday, he made an appeal for an "all-out battle" on clergy sex abuse but offered few specifications, reflecting broader criticisms that the four-day meeting had not produced concrete actions to hold church leaders accountable.

Pope Francis, for the first time, acknowledged the sexual abuse of nuns by priests and bishops, including a case in which some clergy used women as sex slaves. He said on Tuesday that he is committed to ending the problem in the Roman Catholic Church.

Updated at 9 p.m. ET

After weeks of relative silence, Pope Francis has agreed to meet a delegation of U.S. bishops and cardinals to discuss the Vatican response to the clergy abuse crisis.

National Public Radio

Catholics in Western New York and across the world are re-assessing their beliefs, after the Vatican and Pope Francis issued a decree Thursday stating the church now formerly opposes the death penalty in all cases.

The Catholic Church now formally considers the death penalty "inadmissible because it is an attack on the inviolability and dignity of the person" and is pledging to work for its abolition worldwide.

It's a shift for the church, which used to consider the death penalty a "means of safeguarding the common good" in response to "certain crimes." The update to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, the book of official teachings of the church, was announced Thursday.

WBFO News File Photo / WBFO News

The president of St. Bonaventure University was recognized by Pope Francis yesterday.

Photo from the Vatican website.

The Catholic world celebrated an announcement Friday by Pope Francis that Mother Teresa of Calcutta will become a saint. 

Michael Mroziak, WBFO

As Pope Francis addressed Congress in Washington, D.C. on Thursday morning, about 200 guests were viewing the speech on a large monitor inside the Science Hall at Canisius College.


Courtesy of Father Mack's Twitter

Pope Francis will address a joint session of Congress today.  Tens of thousands of people began gathering early this morning on the front lawn of the Capitol to watch the pope's speech on Jumbotron screens and maybe catch a glimpse of Francis. He is expected to wave from a balcony a few hundred yards away.

Hochul attends White House visit by Pope Francis

Sep 24, 2015

Among the crowd welcoming the Pope at the White House was Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul, representing Governor Cuomo. WBFO's Mike Desmond spoke with the lieutenant governor after the visit.


St. Bona grad to participate in Pope Mass

Sep 23, 2015
Photo provided by St. Bonaventure University

A St. Bonaventure graduate has been selected to be one of the gift bearers at Wednesday's Mass with Pope Francis in Washington. WBFO's Focus on Education Reporter Eileen Buckley says the woman selected is a leader of young Catholic organization in the D.C. area.

Mike Desmond/wbfo news

While there are many people from this area going to attend parts of the papal visit to the United States, three departed Tuesday with special access: Congressman Brian Higgins, Niagara University President Father James Maher and Response to Love Center Executive Director Sister Mary Johnice Rzadkiewicz.


Chris Caya WBFO News

More than 200 local residents will be seeing Pope Francis during his six-day visit to Washington, New York and Philadelphia. The local delegation from the Buffalo Catholic Diocese is being led by Bishop Richard Malone.


Local seminarians prepare to see Pope Francis

Sep 21, 2015
WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

A group from Christ the King Seminary in East Aurora will be leaving Tuesday morning bound for Washington, D.C. for the Pope's U.S. visit.  WBFO's Focus on Education Reporter Eileen Buckley says seminarians and faculty members are hoping to have a special session with Pope Francis.

Diocese of Buffalo

Pope Francis is cutting red tape at the Vatican, radically streamlining the process for annulling marriages, necessary if a Catholic wants to remarry in the church.

file photo

A message from Pope Francis regarding forgiveness for repentant women who had abortions has raised eyebrows on both sides of the often-contentious issue.


Schumer holding free lottery for tickets to Papal visit

Aug 22, 2015
courtesy Wikimedia Commons

Senator Charles Schumer will be in the audience when Pope Francis addresses a joint session of Congress in Washington next month. He's giving New Yorkers a chance to win his guest ticket, or a place on the Mall, when the Holy See comes to the U.S. next month.

Mike Desmond/wbfo news

Sister Simone Campbell is best known for organizing the Nuns on the Bus campaigns against social ills. As she continues to press her message, she made a stop in Buffalo Sunday.

WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

Two Western New Yorkers are calling on Pope Francis to investigate their cases of sexual abuse against the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo.

Press Pass: 'Change in tone' in the Catholic Church

Dec 2, 2013
WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

Buffalo Bishop Richard Malone has responded to the new dialog recently issued by Pope Francis. In this week's Press Pass conversation, WBFO's Eileen Buckley talks with Buffalo News reporter Brian Meyer about his recent In-Focus interview with Bishop Malone.

Buffalo's Bishop, Richard Malone, is commenting on the eyebrow-raising statement Pope Francis made Monday regarding homosexuals.

Hundreds of thousands packed St. Peter's Square for the Inaugural of Pope Francis Tuesday for the installation of Pope Francis in Rome.

WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

The newly elected Pope is being highly celebrated in Argentina --  Pope Francis -- is the first Latin American Pope.  WBFO'S Eileen Buckley says that celebration extended right here in Buffalo inside the ballet studio of Neglia Ballet Arts.

WNY Catholics applaud choice of new Pope

Mar 14, 2013
Photo from Getty Images

Western New York Catholics were keeping close watch on Wednesday's papal election. Two local priests say the selection of Pope Francis is significant for the Church.

First Jesuit Pope

Mar 14, 2013

The new leader of the Roman Catholic Church is the first Jesuit Pope.


Argentine Jorge Mario Bergoglio elected Pope

Mar 13, 2013

The Catholic Church has a new pope. Argentine Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio was elected Wednesday. He is the first ever pontiff from the Americas.