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The call comes amid the ongoing abuse crisis in the Church

The Vatican said the deal would ‘contribute positively to the life of the Church in China’

Opposition parties tried to force him out because of his pro-life stance

The ceremony takes place three times a year, and failure to liquefy is seen as a portent of disaster

The former Pope apparently wrote the letters in response to criticism from Cardinal Brandmüller

There are fears a blood test could lead to abortions based on the gender of the baby

Cardinal Becciu will preside over the ceremony of the feast of the Immaculate Conception

Senior US bishops thanked the Pope for meeting them, but declined to go into details on what was discussed

Proportion of US Catholics with a favourable view of the Pope has dropped from 83 per cent to 63 per cent

‘In these times, it seems like the Great Accuser has been unchained and is attacking bishops,’ the Pope said