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Pope Francis on December 16 encouraged everyone to “‘hasten their steps’ toward Christmas,” taking up the restrictions that will characterize this year’s holiday as a chance to make the feast more “authentic, more true.”
The pope offered this encouragement at the end of the Wednesday general audience, which he dedicated to the theme of intercessory prayer.
I would like to encourage everyone to ‘hasten their steps’ toward Christmas, the true Christmas, that is to say, the birth of Jesus Christ. This year, restrictions and inconveniences await us; but let’s think of the Virgin Mary and St. Joseph’s Christmas: it wasn’t a rose garden! How many difficulties they had! How many concerns! And yet faith, hope and love guided and sustained them. May it be thus also for us! May it also help us – this difficulty – to purify a bit the way we live Christmas, the way we celebrate, leaving consumerism behind: May it be more religious, more authentic, more true.
No pandemic can extinguish the light of Christmas!: Pope Francis
Pope Francis points to St. Francis at spot of the first Nativity scene, where Baby Jesus appeared