Vatican

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Pope Francis prays as he celebrates the Christmas mass marking the birth of Jesus Christ on December 24th, 2018 at St Peter’s basilica in Vatican. Photograph: Tiziana Fabi/AFP/Getty Images

Pope Francis has urged Christians to forgo the greed, gluttony and materialism of Christmas and to focus instead on its message of simplicity, charity(...)

In the news: some of the headline-makers of 2018

Answer all 100 questions in our special Christmas Quiz to be in with a chance of winning one of the following prizes: 1st prize: One night (...)

“Some of my friends think I’m crazy for not wanting a shower and baby register. ‘You’re only going to end up with hundreds of babygros and none of what you really need,’ warned one.”

My accountant is rarely the bringer of good news, and this week was no exception. When he mentioned one figure in particular, I thought he was casuall(...)

Pakistani women  queue to vote outside a polling station during the general election in Lahore on July 25th, 2018: female participation in elections in Pakistan is among the lowest in the world. Photograph:  Arif Ali/AFP/Getty Images

The Representation of People Act 1918 granted the vote to Irish and English women aged over 30 who met certain property qualifications. While some na(...)

James Menton, chairman of St Vincent’s Healthcare Group, Minister for Health Simon Harris and Dr Rhona Mahony at the site of the new National Maternity Hospital in March 2017. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

St Vincent’s Healthcare Group has insisted the Sisters of Charity will have no role in the management of the new National Maternity Hospital when it m(...)

Roisin

The co-leader of the Social Democrats Róisín Shortall has claimed that the nuns “haven’t gone away” from the new maternity hospital. Speaking at a ra(...)

Saint Columbanus as depicted in the Irish College in Rome

I’m not sure why Columbanus, the sixth- century holy man whose feastday this is, should be considered the patron saint of motorcyclists.  It see(...)

US secretary of energy Dr Ernest Moniz: “I think after the Paris accord the world is heading to a low-carbon economy.” Photograph:  Dara Mac Donaill

There are grounds for optimism on the global response to climate change, though most countries are “off the pace” required to fulfil their obligations(...)

Queens University Belfast historian, Professor Liam Kennedy said he had  ‘little doubt that mothers who had miscarriages or still-births suffered mental anguish as a result of the death of an unbaptised foetus or still-birth’. File photograph: Alan Betson

A new study from Queen’s University, Belfast has found that belief in limbo – a place for unbaptised babies – has declined throughout the decades in I(...)

Asia Bibi, who was on death row for eight years in Pakistan. Photograph:  British Pakistani Christian Association/AFP/Getty Images

A Pakistani Christian woman has been freed from prison a week after the supreme court overturned her conviction and death sentence for blasphemy agai(...)

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