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Morning Catholic must-reads: 19/12/14

Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith of Colombo, Sri Lanka, with Pope Francis in Rome (CNS/Paul Haring)

The Pope’s visit to Sri Lanka will not be cancelled under any circumstances, Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith of Colombo has insisted.

Francis has given Italian children five tips for becoming stronger Catholics (full text).

Archbishop André-Joseph Léonard of Malines-Brussels has said he has already written his letter of resignation months before his 75th birthday in May.

John Chryssavgis says the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople is seeking a major joint celebration of the 1,700th anniversary of the Council of Nicaea in 2025.

Ann Carey suggests the Vatican report on US women religious was more critical than many think.

David Gibson says Francis is unlikely to win the Nobel Peace Prize for the US-Cuba breakthrough.

And Francis marked his birthday this week by giving 400 sleeping bags, complete with papal insignia, to Rome’s homeless.

Follow me on Twitter @lukecoppen for updates throughout the day.