On Christmas day, Pope Francis sought peace for Jerusalem and for all the Holy Land. As tens of thousands of worshippers gathered at the Vatican to hear the pontiff’s fifth “Urbi et Orbi” (To the City and The World) message which was delivered hours after a Christmas Eve mass, the Pope spoke on how migrants had been driven from their land because of leaders willing to shed what he described as“innocent blood”. During the traditional Christmas address, the Pope specifically called for peace in Jerusalem and highlighted the plight of children scarred by conflict.
Pope Francis said: “We see Jesus in the children of the Middle East who continue to suffer because of growing tensions between Israelis and Palestinians. Let us pray that the will to resume dialogue may prevail between the parties and that a negotiated solution can finally be reached, one that would allow the peaceful coexistence of two states within mutually agreed and internationally recognised borders.”