In Christmas message, pope laments children in war, poverty
Vatican City — Pope Francis urged Christians to celebrate the birth of Jesus by thinking about the plight of today’s children, bemoaning how some must escape bombs or flee in migrant boats and how others are prevented from being born at all.
Francis celebrated a somber Christmas Eve Mass in a packed St. Peter’s Basilica, processing to the altar behind cardinals draped in golden vestments as the Sistine Chapel choir sang “Gloria” and the church bells rang out across Rome.
Francis has spent much of the year denouncing the Islamic extremist violence that has driven Christians from Mideast communities that date to the time of Christ. He has also demanded Europe in particular do…