Morning Catholic must-reads: 23/03/12

Benedict XVI waves as he boards the plane to Mexico (AP)

Benedict XVI used a cane reportedly for the first time in public this morning when he arrived at Leonardo da Vinci airport in Rome at the start of his gruelling six-day trip to Mexico and Cuba (video).

Members of the hacking group Anonymous have taken down two websites promoting the papal visit to Mexico, claiming that the country’s National Action Party is exploiting the trip.

Mary Anastasia O’Grady argues that Benedict XVI’s visit to Cuba “may turn out to be a gross miscalculation”.

Stephen Andes urges the Pope to heed an appeal by Javier Sicilia, a Mexican Catholic poet whose son was tortured and murdered by drug traffickers.

Blogger Archbishop Cranmer is shocked by a leading British abortion provider’s response to reports that clinics are routinely breaking the law.

And Barrie Schwortz, a Jewish man who was part of a team that conducted the first in-depth scientific examination of the Turin Shroud, explains why he is convinced that the cloth is authentic.