Morning Catholic must-reads: 09/12/10

Pope Benedict XVI censes the statue of the Virgin Mary in the Piazza di Spagna (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)

Benedict XVI said that the most precious gift one can offer the Virgin Mary is prayer as he marked the solemnity of the Immaculate Conception at the Piazza di Spagna yesterday (full text).

The United States gained the first officially recognised Marian apparition in its history yesterday.

An Indian Catholic priest who was missing for 14 months has accused fellow clergy of kidnapping him as revenge for disobeying his bishop.

The Archdiocese of Boston has created an iPhone app that allows users to find the nearest Catholic church.

Khataza Gondwe applauds the Pope for highlighting the suffering of Eritrean refugees held by traffickers in Sinai.

Fr James Martin SJ welcomes Vatican official Archbishop Joseph Tobin’s candid interview about the Apostolic Visitation of American women religious.

Davey Winder of IT Pro wonders whether Benedict XVI really is a software pirate.

And Frank Weathers explains why he is praying for the repose of the soul of Count Dracula.