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Pope Francis at a Vatican conference last week (CNS)

A video message from Francis to the Mexican people has been released by the Vatican

Pilgrims on their way to the Holy Door of St Peter's Basilica. 'We're in the Year of Mercy, and ... we need to be open as a community to understand, you know, this is an individual who needs God's help, as we all do, and his forgiveness' (Photo: CNS)

Off-duty police officer took thief ‘down to the ground’

The cast of Spotlight, which has received rave reviews

In the post-Vatican II Church notions of crime and justice had no place and abusers were labelled as victims

Pope Francis speaking at  the Paul VI Hall (AP)

The Vatican has released Francis’s message on the theme of mercy

Flowers are left below a mural of David Bowie on the wall of a Morley's store in Brixton, London (Photo: PA)

In his interview with Andrea Tornielli Pope Francis recalled his first encounter with God’s mercy

Italian actor Roberto Benigni holds a copy of The Name of God Is Mercy at the book's launch (CNS)

Italian actor and comedian Roberto Benigni was at the unveiling of a newly published book-length interview

Pope Francis speaks during the traditional greeting to the Roman Curia in the Clementine Hall of the Apostolic Palace at the Vatican (CNS)

The Pope gave his annual talk to the Curia on Monday

Pope Francis presents a rose at an icon of Mary and the child Jesus as he begins his general audience in St Peter's Square (Photo: CNS)

Francis says the Year will help Catholics become ‘more effective witnesses’

Pope Francis in St Peter's Basilica (Photo: AP)

In a homily the Pope says priests who struggle to be merciful should avoid hearing Confessions

Cardinal Nichols (Photo: CNS)

Cardinal Nichols provides a wonderful antidote to the legalism that sees morality as a set of rules