Ailing pope, reducing appearances, prays for homeless dead

first_imgVATICAN CITY (AP) — Ailing Pope Francis, who is making limited public appearances due to persistent pain, drew attention to the plight of homeless people in winter, including a Nigerian man who froze to death not far from the Vatican. Francis on Sunday asked for prayers for the man named Edwin, who he said was 46, and who was “ignored by all, abandoned, even by us.” A day after the Vatican said that Francis, 84, was suffering again from sciatica, a nerve inflammation that can affect the lower back and legs, the pope skipped celebrating Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica. But he appeared in the Apostolic Palace library to give his blessing.last_img read more

Heaslip returns for Wales game

first_imgThere’s no place in the match-day squad for Tipperary’s Tommy O’Donnell despite a strong performance against England. He’s replaced on the bench by Jordi Murphy who drops out of the starting fifteen to make way for the returning Heaslip. An unbeaten Ireland take on Wales this Saturday and will be looking to keep their Grandslam aspirations alive. Paul O’Connell, will captain the side and win his 100th Test cap for Ireland and lines out alongside second row partner Devin Toner.  The front-row is made up of Jack McGrath, Mike Ross and Rory Best. Heaslip is joined in the backrow byPeter O’Mahony and Sean O’Brien.The backline is unchanged with Conor Murray and Johnny Sexton, who will win his 50th cap, paired at half-back and the combination of Robbie Henshaw and Jared Payne links up again in midfield. Rob Kearney is joined in the back three by Tommy Bowe and Simon Zebo.Cahir’s O’Donnell is replaced on the bench by Jordi Murphy with the remainder of the replacements unchanged: Sean Cronin, Martin Moore, Cian Healy, Iain Henderson, Eoin Reddan, Ian Madigan and Felix Jones.last_img read more