From the central loggia of st. Peter’s cathedral, he gave the traditional "urbi et orbi" blessing in front of tens of thousands of people (the city and the district). The christmas message of the pope elected in march was broadcasted live in about 50 countries.
In view of the growing number of refugees from syria and numerous african countries, the pope called on wealthy countries to take in more migrants. "Let tragedies like the numerous deaths in lampedusa never happen again", he said. At the beginning of october, 400 african refugees drowned in two shipwrecks off lampedusa.
In addition to the war in syria, the pope also addressed numerous other conflicts in the middle east and africa. Deviating from the text of his speech, he also explicitly called on non-believers to strive for peace.
Among other things, he expressed hope for a solution to the middle east conflict. The peace negotiations between israelis and palastinians should "come to a happy end", he said.
He also expressed concern about the armed conflicts in the central african republic. There were many people living below the subsistence level without access to water and food. Violence in sudsudan and nigeria must also end. Francis also recalled the persecution of christians in several parts of the world.
According to the pope, children are particularly defenseless when exposed to warlike violence. Many of them were "kidnapped, injured and killed, made soldiers and thus deprived of their childhood", franciscus complained. Epd