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A barefooted pilgrim walks on his hands and knees to the Basilica of St Francis in Assisi (CNS photo/Paul Haring)

His own life was a pilgrimage of joyful suffering towards a closer union with Christ

Pope Benedict proclaimed the Year of Faith at Mass at St Peter's on Sunday (CNS photo/Paul Haring)

Morning Catholic must-reads: 18/10/11

A daily guide to what’s happening in the Catholic Church

Gilad Shalit gives his first interview to Egyptian television after his release

His kidnapping five years ago has done the Palestinian cause no favours

The Queen’s cousin has set a fine example to fellow royals and fellow Catholics

A little moderate scepticism helps when reading stories online
Benedict XVI uses a mobile platform at Mass in St Peter's yesterday (AP Photo)

Morning Catholic must-reads: 17/10/11

A daily guide to what’s happening in the Catholic Church

And why do the police so unquestioningly follow the instructions of the social services?

The recent scandals in the NHS highlight our society’s lack of respect for old people. We should offer more help to families caring for relatives, but we also have to change our attitude towards the elderly

In It's a Wonderful Life George is saved by his guardian angel Clarence

Guardian angels come low down on the list of Christian beliefs, yet we should not dismiss them as ‘childish’. Abandon ideas such as this and the whole edifice of belief soon falls down

Benedict XVI prays at the tomb of Blessed John Paul II (CNS)

Morning Catholic must-reads: 14/10/11

A daily guide to what’s happening in the Catholic Church