Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Pope prays for peace in Syria, Holy Land; religious freedom in China

Catholic World News - December 26, 2012

In his Urbi et Orbi message, Pope Benedict XVI made special appeals for peace in Syria, the Holy Land, and Africa, and for religious freedom in China.

The Pope delivered his traditional message from the balcony of St. Peter’s basilica at noon on Christmas Day. Having presided at midnight Mass just hours earlier, he showed signs of fatigue and his voice was slightly hoarse as he delivered short messages in 65 different languages.

The Pope began by calling attention to the current Year of Faith. He remarked that the “human ability to be closed to God can make us fearful.” But especially at Christmas time, he said, believers know “the hope that conquers fear.”

In a review of the world’s trouble spots, the Pope offered prayers for peace first in Syria, where he called for an end to “a conflict which does not spare even the defenseless and reaps innocent victims.” Next he turned to the Holy Land, praying that Israelis and Palestinians will have the “courage to end to long years of conflict and division.”

The Pope also mentioned conflicts in northern Africa, and especially the turmoil in Egypt. He referred as well to the violence that has struck other African countries: Mali, Nigeria, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Kenya.

Pope Benedict made a special mention of the new political leaders of China, praying that “they will esteem the contribution of the religions, in respect for each, in such a way that they can help to build a fraternal society for the benefit of that noble People and of the whole world.”

Additional sources for this story
Some links will take you to other sites, in a new window.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach five million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Progress toward our April expenses ($18,300 to go):
$35,000.00 $16,700.48
52% 48%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

There are no comments yet for this item.

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Round Trip to the present moment: a Catholic jazz artist's latest offering 15 hours ago
Easter with the Pope April 21
Smaller Church, Bigger Faith, 3: Ecclesiastical Discipline April 17
The Holy Spirit and Evangelization: A Primer April 16
Journey to the Sun: A Strange Biography of Junípero Serra April 16

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope Francis: Easter Vigil homily (full text) CWN - April 20
Pope Francis's Easter Message 'Urbi et Orbi' (To the City and the World): full text, link to video CWN - April 20