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Inside the VaticanFebruary 25, 2022
Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill of Moscow celebrates the Divine Liturgy at the Cathedral of Christ the Savior in Moscow in this May 24, 2017, file photo. (CNS photo/Robert Duncan)

Russian troops entered two breakaway regions of Eastern Ukraine on Monday, Feb. 21 and launched a full-scale invasion on Thursday, Feb. 24. The day before Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia took the decision to initiate war in Ukraine. Pope Francis called for all people to pray and fast for peace in Ukraine on Ash Wednesday, March 2. It was the second time the pope has called for a day of prayer for peace.

On this “Inside the Vatican” episode, host Colleen Dulle and veteran Vatican correspondent Gerard O’Connell examine the religious aspects of the Russia-Ukraine conflict. Colleen asks Gerry, why has Pope Francis refrained from calling out Russia by name?

Update: After this episode aired, Pope Francis visited the Russian embassy to the Holy See in an unexpected and unprecedented diplomatic move. Read Gerry’s full report: Pope Francis visits Russian embassy as invasion of Ukraine continues

In the second half of the show, Gerry and Colleen discuss the recent exemption Pope Francis granted to a group of traditionalist priests, giving them permission to continue celebrating the pre-Vatican II Mass.

Finally, Pope Francis spoke at a conference on the priesthood held in the Vatican last week. Gerry recaps the key takeaways from the pope’s speech.

Read more:

Pope Francis declares Ash Wednesday a day of fasting and prayer for peace in Ukraine

Praying for peace in Ukraine—even when it feels useless

Pope Francis approves use of Latin Mass for group of traditionalist priests

Pope Francis: Priests need to have these 4 traits in the world today

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