Today, in his annual Christmas message, Pope Francis prayed that the international community be supported in efforts to continue the ceasefire in Artsakh and in areas where armed conflicts and humanitarian crisis persist, repros Vatican News.
Pope Francis delivered his traditional Christmas message and Blessing Urbi et Orbi (“To the City [of Rome] and the World”), offering words of hope and consolation, saying a birth is always a source of hope, and “this Child, Jesus, was born ‘to us’ … without any borders, privileges or exclusions.”
He pronounced his message in the Hall of Benediction of St. Peter’s Basilica, the upper area just behind the central loggia where he would usually have delivered his message. The pandemic and safety measures in place led to a decision to avoid the risk of large public gatherings in St. Peter’s Square and hence to broadcast live his message from inside the Basilica.
Looking at other areas of the world, he prayed that the international community be supported in efforts to continue the ceasefire in Nagorno-Karabakh, eastern Ukraine. And in areas where armed conflicts and humanitarian crisis persist, he remembered Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger, Ethiopia, Mozambique, South Sudan, Nigeria, and Cameroon and for their suffering to finally end.
The unity we need and seek as brothers and sisters, God has made possible, the Pope said, “by giving us his Son Jesus”, a fraternity that is “grounded in genuine love”, where we can encounter others who are different, feel compassion for their sufferings, and draw near and care for them even if they “do not belong to my family, my ethnic group or my religion.”
“To us a child is born, to us a son is given” (Isaiah 9:6). The theme of the Pope’s Christmas message looks at how Jesus was born for everyone, “the ‘Son’ that God has given to the entire human family”
Photo by Vatican Media