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The Solemnity of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist
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Pope tells children the secret to a “true Christmas”

© Antoine Mekary / ALETEIA

Thousands of Italian children take a Baby Jesus from their Nativity Scene (for the tradition Bambinelli) to be blessed by Pope Francis during his weekly Sunday Angelus prayer in St. Peter's Square in Vatican City, December 11, 2016.

Aleteia - published on 12/17/18

Prays that they and their families may experience it

On Sunday, Pope Francis celebrated the tradition of “Bambinelli Sunday” with the midday Angelus in St. Peter’s Square.

The Third Sunday of Advent has for many years been the day when the children of Rome bring the Baby Jesus statues from their Nativity Scenes to St. Peter’s Square to be blessed by the pope. The day is affectionately known as “Bambinelli Sunday.”

Speaking from the window of his studio, the Holy Father had a special message for the children:

Dear children, in your houses, you will collect yourselves in prayer before the nativity display, and gazing at the baby Jesus you will feel wonder… You ask me, what does “wonder” mean? It is a stronger sentiment and more than a common emotion. It is seeing God: wonder at the great mystery of God made man; and the Holy Spirit will place humility, tenderness and the goodness of Jesus in your heart. Jesus is good, Jesus is tender, Jesus is humble. This is the true Christmas! Do not forget this. May it be thus for you and for your families. I bless all your “Bambinelli”.


POPE FRANCIS AUDIENCE

Read more:
Little boy joins pope for catechesis; Francis draws lesson from his freedom (VIDEO)

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