Continued from page 1

Wright has been under house arrest for the past four weeks at his home near Lisbon, wearing an electronic tag that monitors his movements.

Wright spent seven years in a U.S. prison for the New Jersey murder before escaping in 1970, and was on the run for 41 years until his arrest. Wright initially had been held in a Lisbon jail since he was caught.


Pope to articulate position on Africa

COTONOU | Pope Benedict XVI is returning this week to Africa, the Roman Catholic Church’s fastest-growing region whose pool of aspiring priests replenish dwindling numbers of clerics elsewhere.

The 84-year-old pope arrives on Friday and will visit a seminary in the western town of Ouidah.

This tiny nation on Africa’s western coast is emblematic of the church’s growth spurt. In just the past decade, Benin’s Catholic population has grown by half, adding more than half-a-million converts.

In the same period the pope’s native Germany has lost nearly 2 million worshippers, according to the World Christian Database.

Benedict is planning to release a document outlining the future of the church in Africa, a pastoral guide that is expected to use the church and its doctrine of penance and forgiveness to address Africa’s numerous ills, especially the cycle of violence.

The pope’s position will likely be guided by the 57 recommendations of the 2009 synod held in the capital of Cameroon, where bishops met to articulate the future of the church in Africa.

Among the proposals is the creation of a “sacrament of reconciliation” by organizing both individual and collective acts of forgiveness, a strategy intended to stem the acts of retribution common to many of Africa’s conflicts.


Still no government after 500 days

BRUSSELS | After more than 500 days, the world’s longest government negotiations are dragging themselves toward the finish line in Belgium, to the likely relief of markets, the European Union and even the archbishop.

Government broker Elio Di Rupo on Thursday called on the six negotiating parties to agree a 2012 budget that should pave the way to the formation of a new government.

Story Continues →