During the last general hearing on Wednesday before Christmas, Pope Francis, addressing the faithful, referred to the real and deeper meaning of Christmas.
“Consumerism, my brothers and sisters, has stolen Christmas. Let us not be swept up by consumerism,” stressed the pope. “We are on the threshold of Christmas. Let us look around us, let us look especially at those who are in need: the brother who suffers, wherever he may be, is one of us,” he added.
One of the measures taken by the pope is that, during the holidays and on Christmas day, he would not to bless the faithful from the main window of Saint Peter’s Basilica but from the inner hall of the Apostolic Palace. The blessing will be broadcast live on TV.
At the same time, tomorrow’s midnight service of the Nativity will begin two hours earlier than usual (at 7.30 pm instead of 9.30 pm). A very limited number of believers will be able to attend the service in Saint Peter’s Basilica.