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Ten stories to watch in 2017

A guide to the stories that will be making headlines in 2017 Last year proved beyond all doubt that journalists are terrible at predicting the future. Few commentators foresaw Brexit, the emergence of François Fillon in France or Donald Trump’s presidency. With that in mind, we offer this guide to 10 topics that are likely






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Vatican gallery reopens after seven-year restoration

The Braccio Nuovo Gallery, located inside the Vatican Museums, will reopen to the public after a $2.4 million makeover, having been closed for seven years. The gallery is filled with stunning marble busts and statues dating back to the height of the Roman Empire. One of the jewels in the Vatican Museums will reopen to






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Pope names first woman to head Vatican Museums

Barbara Jatta has been serving as vice-director of the museums since June Pope Francis has chosen, for the first time, a woman to head the Vatican Museums. Barbara Jatta, 54, is an Italian art historian and graphic arts expert, who had been serving as vice-director of the museums since June. The Vatican announced the appointment






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Pope Francis grants freedom to monsignor jailed over leaks

Mgr Vallejo was found guilty of passing confidential documents to journalists Pope Francis on Tuesday freed a Vatican monsignor convicted of leaking confidential documents to journalists, granting him a Christmas-time clemency. Francis granted “conditional freedom” to Spanish Monsignor Lucio Vallejo Balda after he served half of his 18-month sentence, the Vatican said late on Tuesday.






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The astonishing secret history of the Pope who fought Hitler

Pope Pius XII’s secret support for the attempted overthrow of Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler is the subject of a recent book that draws on wartime documents and interviews with the American intelligence agent who wrote them. “This book is the truth – as best I could establish it in a number of years of research






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The Church ‘does not pretend’ – Vatican warns Christianity is at risk

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While violent persecution against Christians assails swaths of territory the Middle East and Africa, one Vatican official says that Western nations face a different type of oppression, marked by the push to eliminate religion from public life. “To act and speak out publicly as a committed Christian in one’s professional life has never been more






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