SUDAN WATCH: The Pope's "Urbi et Orbi"

Sunday, December 26, 2004

The Pope's "Urbi et Orbi"

Thousands of locals, tourists and pilgrims turned out in freezing rain at noon yesterday in St Peter's Square Rome to hear the Pope's traditional "Urbi et Orbi" (Latin for "to the city and to the world") message and holiday wishes in dozens of languages. Dissapointingly, it was not transmitted on British television.

The Pope has called for peace in Iraq and Sudan and said he hoped that peace-building efforts will bring the world a more tranquil future.

"Babe of Bethlehem, Prophet of peace, encourage attempts to promote dialogue and reconciliation, sustain the efforts to build peace, which hesitantly, yet not without hope, are being made to bring about a more tranquil present and future for so many of our brothers and sisters of the world," John Paul said, slowly pronouncing each word and often pausing to catch his breath.

"I think of Africa, of the tragedy of Darfur in Sudan, of the Ivory Coast and of the Great Lakes Region," John Paul said of those conflict areas.

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Pope John Paul II at Midnight Mass. Report courtesy UKTelegraph

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