| 6.4°C Dublin

Donors help save Childline

THE ISPCC has confirmed that Childline's night-time service will remain open in the new year.

In October this year, the Childline service embarked on an emergency appeal seeking funding of €1.2m to cover a deficit in funds. To date, the organisation has received public and corporate donations totalling €400,000 and an additional pledged amount of €300,000. Following on from this, the ISPCC have secured a two-year funding agreement with the Department of Children.

Boy finds gun in graveyard

Pope points to Vatican failings

Pope Francis has issued a blistering critique of the Vatican bureaucracy that serves him, denouncing how some people lust for power at all costs, live hypocritical double lives and suffer from "spiritual Alzheimer's" that has made them forget they're supposed to be men of God.

Francis' Christmas greeting to the cardinals, bishops and priests who run the Holy See was a sobering catalogue of 15 sins of the Curia that he hoped would be atoned for and cured in the New Year.

City gets a rub of The Fat One

Spaniards who bought lottery tickets in an upper middle class Madrid neighborhood hit the jackpot, getting €400,000 payoffs from a €2.5bn pot of cash that will be divided among thousands of ticketholders.

More than 100 of the top winning tickets were sold in the downtown neighborhood. Unlike lotteries that offer one jackpot, Spain's Christmas season El Gordo (The Fat One) distributes prizes to thousands.