In his “Urbi et Orbi” message on Saturday, 25 December, in Saint Peter’s Square, Pope Francis expressed the joy of this day when God shows us through the birth of Jesus the way of encounter and dialogue so that we might know it and follow it in trust and hope, something needed more than ever in our troubled world. The Holy Father recalled how in “this time of pandemic”, the “capacity for social relationships is sorely tried” and on the “international level too, there is the risk of avoiding dialogue”, the risk that this complex crisis will lead “to taking shortcuts” unsuitable “to the resolution of conflicts”. Pope Francis listed one by one the situations of conflicts and suffering in the different geographical areas of the various continents and among the peoples. “By the coming of Jesus, the Person of the Word made flesh, into our world”, the Pope explained, “God showed us the way of encounter and dialogue. Indeed, he made that way incarnate in himself, so that we might know it and follow it, in trust and hope”.
The previous evening, celebrating Christmas Eve Mass on Friday, 24 December, in the Vatican Basilica, the Pope in his homily recalled how in the darkness, a light shines, an angel appears, announcing to the Shepherds “To you is born this day a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord”. Telling them how to find the “God who has come down to earth,” the angel directs them to the child wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.