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Sparks of humour in Pope Francis's first days
Sparks of humour in Pope Francis's first days

Starting with the historic moment when the first Latin American pontiff greeted the crowds in St Peter's Square after his election on Wednesday, Pope Francis has shown a lively sense of humour.

Sparks of humour in Pope Francis's first days
Argentine grandmothers attack Pope over 'Dirty War' era
Argentine grandmothers attack Pope over 'Dirty War' era

An Argentinian human rights group set up to find babies stolen during the country's "Dirty War" on Friday accused newly elected Pope Francis of failing to speak out against the country's former military rulers.

Argentine grandmothers attack Pope over 'Dirty War' era
New Pope warns Church of dangers of inaction
New Pope warns Church of dangers of inaction

Pope Francis has warned that the troubled Catholic Church risks becoming little more than a charity with no spiritual foundations if it fails to undergo renewal.

New Pope warns Church of dangers of inaction
Russian Church predicts good ties with new Pope
Russian Church predicts good ties with new Pope

The Russian Orthodox Church expects that newly elected Pope Francis will foster positive relations between the two churches.

Russian Church predicts good ties with new Pope
Pope Francis hailed, urged to work for peace
Pope Francis hailed, urged to work for peace

World leaders and Catholics hailed the election of Jorge Bergoglio from Argentina as the first Latin American pope on Wednesday, urging him to work for religious reconciliation and peace.

Pope Francis hailed, urged to work for peace
Newly elected Pope Francis, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina. ©REUTERS/Dylan Martinez
Argentina's Bergoglio elected first Latin American pope

Argentina's Jorge Mario Bergoglio was elected Pope Francis on Wednesday, becoming the first Latin American pontiff in an astonishing decision that raises hopes of greater openness for the troubled Catholic Church.

Argentina's Bergoglio elected first Latin American pope
All eyes on Vatican chimney as world awaits new pope
All eyes on Vatican chimney as world awaits new pope

Cardinals prepared for a second day of conclave behind the Vatican's walls to elect a pope on Wednesday, with all eyes on a chimney that will signal when there is a new leader for the world's 1.2 billion Catholics.

All eyes on Vatican chimney as world awaits new pope
Odds stacked against an Asian pope
Odds stacked against an Asian pope

Catholics in Asia and other parts of the world where the Roman Catholic Church is growing fast would dearly like to see the cardinals choose an Asian pope for the first time in history.

Odds stacked against an Asian pope
Breaking the silence -- secrets of the pope elections
Breaking the silence -- secrets of the pope elections

The conclaves of cardinals which elect a new pope are laden with rituals and shrouded in secrecy, but tantalising details have emerged from previous votes of what really happens behind the sealed doors of the Sistine Chapel.

Breaking the silence -- secrets of the pope elections
Vatican readies Sistine Chapel for conclave to elect pope
Vatican readies Sistine Chapel for conclave to elect pope

Vatican workers made final preparations in the Sistine Chapel on Saturday after Roman Catholic cardinals voted to begin their conclave to elect a new pope under Michelangelo's famous frescoes next week.

Vatican readies Sistine Chapel for conclave to elect pope
Sex abuse victims list 'dirty dozen' papal candidates
Sex abuse victims list 'dirty dozen' papal candidates

Clergy sex abuse victims listed a "dirty dozen" potential papal candidates Wednesday and urged the Roman Catholic Church to "get serious" about protecting children, helping victims and exposing corruption.

Sex abuse victims list 'dirty dozen' papal candidates
Will the next pope be Italian?
Will the next pope be Italian?

After a Pole and a German, will the Roman Catholic Church revert to an Italian leader once again?

Will the next pope be Italian?
Vatican's popeless interim -- the 'Sede Vacante'
Vatican's popeless interim -- the 'Sede Vacante'

After the pope's resignation on Thursday the Catholic Church will enter a period known as "Sede Vacante" ("Vacant Seat") in which a cardinal takes over interim powers before a new pope is elected.

Vatican's popeless interim -- the 'Sede Vacante'
Canadian papal contender not a prophet in own land
Canadian papal contender not a prophet in own land

Canada's Cardinal Marc Ouellet, a mainstream conservative churchman who once said becoming pope "would be a nightmare", is now widely seen as the North American candidate for the job.

Canadian papal contender not a prophet in own land
Pope announces resignation in historic move
Pope announces resignation in historic move

Pope Benedict XVI announced he will resign as leader of the world's 1.1 billion Catholics on February 28 because his age prevented him from carrying out his duties -- an unprecedented move in the modern history of the Catholic Church.

Pope announces resignation in historic move
Cardinal Angelo Sodano. ©REUTERS
Nazarbayev met with Pope's envoy

Kazakhstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev met with Cardinal Angelo Sodano, Envoy of the Pope, Dean of the College of Cardinals.

Nazarbayev met with Pope's envoy