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Calls for Catholic charity to cut ties with McBride book

A leading Catholic charity is facing calls to cut all ties with Damian McBride's explosive new memoir on the basis that it will "affect the charity's relationship with key political figures".

McBride is the head of media for the Catholic Agency for Overseas Development (CAFOD) and, according to his publisher Iain Dale, has agreed to donate some of his royalties to the charity.

A Twitter spat has now broken out between the editor of Catholic magazine The Tablet, who is calling for CAFOD to "disassociate" from these royalties, and Mr Dale:

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Church's moral structure could 'fall like a house of cards'

The Pontiff's statements mark a contrast with the views and priorities of his predecessors. Credit: Reuters

Pope Francis has warned that the Church's moral structure could "fall like a house of cards" unless it changed.

The Pope - who was elected as the 266th Pontiff in March - said the Church had become engulfed in "small-minded rules", insisting the church needed to find a new balance to "heal wounds" of its faithful.

"We have to find a new balance; otherwise even the moral edifice of the church is likely to fall like a house of cards, losing the freshness and fragrance of the Gospel," he said in his first major interview of his papacy.

Read: Pope: 'Church is too focused on gays and abortion'

Pope: 'Church is too focused on gays and abortion'

Pope Francis has said the Catholic Church is too focused on preaching about abortion, gay people and contraception, in the first major interview of his papacy.

Speaking to Jesuit magazine, Pope Francis said: "We cannot insist only on issues related to abortion, gay marriage and the use of contraceptive methods. This is not possible.

Pope Francis has said the Catholic Church is too focused on preaching about abortion, gay people and contraception Credit: PA Wire

"The teaching of the Church, for that matter, is clear and I am a son of the Church, but it is not necessary to talk about these issues all the time.''

In July, the Pope told reporters he would not judge priests for their sexual orientation in a move away from the views traditionally held by the Roman Catholic Church.

Pope draws 3 million worshippers to Copacabana Mass

Up to three million worshippers greeted Pope Francis today for his closing Mass on Copacabana beach in Rio de Janeiro.

As people jogged alongside his open-sided car, the pontiff paused to bless an emotional boy who was lifted up to greet him.

He then gave Mass in front of worshippers, many of whom had stayed overnight on the beach to see him.

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Pope Francis draws 2m for vigil on Copacabana Beach

Pope Francis drew an estimated two million Catholic faithful to Rio's Copacabana Beach for the final evening of World Youth Day, hours after he chastised the Brazilian church for failing to stem the "exodus" of Catholics to evangelical congregations.

In the longest and most important speech of his four-month pontificate, Pope Francis said: "At times we lose people because they don't understand what we are saying, because we have forgotten the language of simplicity and import an intellectualism foreign to our people.

Pope Francis greets the faithful as he arrives at Copacabana Beach. Credit: Reuters

"Without the grammar of simplicity, the Church loses the very conditions which make it possible to fish for God in the deep waters of his mystery", he added.

Catholic faithful crowd the streets and Copacabana Beach. Credit: Reuters/Sergio Moraes

Pope Francis celebrates Mass in Rio de Janeiro

Pope Francis celebrated Mass in Rio de Janeiro's San Sebastian Cathedral on his last full day in the country before he returns to Rome.

He challenged the Catholic clergy around the world to get out of their churches and preach, and go to the farthest reaches of society to find the faithful.

Pope Francis addresses the congregation. Credit: Reuters

"A bishop, a priest, consecrated people, a seminarian cannot be forgetful", the pontiff said.

Inside the Sao Sebastiao Cathedral Credit: Reuters

Wind-whipped Pope gives sermon on Copacabana

Pope Francis was battered by the wind and soaked with rain but continued to speak to the faithful on the beach. Credit: Reuters

Pope Francis braved the elements to deliver a speech during the Catholic Church's World Day of Youth at Copacabana beach in Rio de Janeiro.

Pope Francis is on the fourth day of his week-long visit for World Youth Day which has seen regular downpours.

Pope Francis was battered by the wind and soaked with rain but continued to speak to the faithful on the beach. Credit: Reuters

The non-stop rain forced the Vatican to relocate a Mass that Pope Francis will celebrate on Sunday from a rural countryside west of Rio de Janeiro to Copacabana beach when the fields turned to mud.

Pope Francis was battered by the wind and soaked with rain but continued to speak to the faithful on the beach. Credit: Reuters
Pope Francis receives some help with his wayward mantle. Credit: Reuters
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