Jews ask pope to push for aid worker's release in Cuba

WASHINGTON (RNS) The Jewish community is trying to enlist the pope to intercede on behalf of Alan Gross, the Maryland Jewish man who has been in a Cuban jail for more than two years, on his upcoming trip to the island nation. By Lauren Markoe.

Vatican website hacked for church's 'crimes'

VATICAN CITY (RNS) The Vatican website was under attack by the hacker group Anonymous on Wednesday, which said it targeted the Roman Catholic Church to punish it for its many 'crimes,' from sexual abuse to persecution of other religions. By Alessandro Speciale.

Cash-strapped Italy looks to tax church-owned properties

VATICAN CITY (RNS) Spurred by the economic crisis, Italy's government has taken the unprecedented step of revising long-standing tax exemptions for church-owned property. But experts say the new rules probably won't have a dramatic impact on Italy's finances. By Alessandro Speciale.