Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Pope: Try joy ahead of Christmas

15 December 2014, 07:06

Rome - Pope Francis is encouraging people to be joyful, saying, "We've never heard of a sad saint."

About 50 000 people flocked to St Peter's Square for the pope's traditional Sunday noontime window appearance. Among them were many children clutching figurines of baby Jesus for Francis to bless for Christmas crèche scenes at home or school.

Francis said: "Man's heart desires joy. Every family, every people, aspires to happiness."

He said being "missionaries of joy" should be part of lifestyles to help people through difficulties. Holding up a pocket-sized prayer book, he urged the crowd to take free copies being distributed in the square

To symbolise joy in anticipation of Christmas, priests worldwide donned rose-coloured vestments, just as the pope did on Sunday evening for a Mass he celebrated at a parish in a working-class neighbourhood on Rome's outskirts.

Also Read: Imagine Christmas like this!

During his homily, Francis said that this Sunday is known as the "Sunday of joy" in the Catholic church.

Many people in the rush toward Christmas fret about "all they still haven't" done for holiday preparations, he said. But, Francis said: "Think of all the good things life has given you."

"It hurts to see Christians with a bitter face, restless with bitterness because they are not at peace," he said. "Saints have the face of joy."

"Don't forget: 'joy,'" Francis said, just before leaving and gave a thumbs-up sign of appreciation to the parish musicians.

Greeting Francis when he arrived at church was a handmade sign proclaiming in Italian, "Happy Birthday, Holiness" in brightly coloured letters.

Francis turns 78 on Wednesday. The pope told the parents of 60 infants who were baptised in the parish during 2014 that his own baptism took place on Christmas Day in 1936.

- AP


Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Nigeria @ 56: Words to my green f...

A leader’s job is not to dictate, but rather to be respected, admired and be a trustee, of the land we love, with so much potential, a land which should be freer than free. Its still a long way to fufilling our destiny! Read more...

Submitted by
Isaac Asabor263
Recession: An opportunity for Nig...

The recession should be seen as an opportunity for the country’s promotion as long as we all collectively conduct ourselves in a patriotic manner, writes Isaac Asabor.  Read more...

Submitted by
Black and White

We want to imitate the whites in everything because we are ignorant of our inherent originality and content. We spend all our Naira to acquire his inventions because we so oblivious of our natural endowments that we allow him have it for free. Read more...

Submitted by
Nate Nat
Adamawa State University Mubi: A ...

ADSU integrity forum has accused the Sunday Joshua Wugira, a lawyer, of adopting unorthodox tactics by abusing his privilege by attacking the integrity of ADSU Vice Chancellor Dr. Moses Zira Zaruwa, writes a News24 reader. Read more...

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
My Country Nigeria (Part One)

Poetry by Abdulsalam Jubril.

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
Recession, dearth in leadership a...

Every leader has the opportunity to become great and making himself immortal in the lives and hearts of people for generations to come. Will Mr. President seize this opportunity?, questions Abdulsalam Jubril. Read more...