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Archive photo of Pope Francis meeting artisti participating in the Christmas Concert in the Vatican 2020 Archive photo of Pope Francis meeting artisti participating in the Christmas Concert in the Vatican 2020  (Vatican Media)

Pope Francis: Art creates brotherhood and friendship

Before the General Audience in the Paul VI Hall, the Pope greeted the artists who will perform Thursday in the 2021 Christmas Concert in the Vatican, and thanked them for the support that the proceeds of the show will bring to educational projects in Lebanon and Haiti.

By Vatican News staff reporter

Greeting the artists who will perform in the Annual Christmas Concert in the Vatican on Thursday evening, Pope Francis told them that they were using their talents to spread the tenderness, joy, and hope of Christmas.

He described the tenderness of a mother embracing her newborn child in the Nativity scene and  “the love of a father protecting and defending his family."

Tenderness of the Nativity

“We see shepherds moved by a newborn baby, angels celebrating the coming of the Lord... Everything is permeated by the sense of wonder and love that leads to tenderness,” he said.

The Pope told those gathered that “St Francis of Assisi, with his living nativity scene at Greccio, wanted to represent what had happened in the cave of Bethlehem, so that it could be contemplated and adored.”

He continued, “It is precisely the love that transpires in this scene that generates joy.” The blossoming of life is always a cause for joy, which helps to overcome suffering.

A future through education

The Pope noted that the proceeds from this year’s  Christmas Concert will go to support “educational projects, especially for children and young people in two countries with very precarious conditions: Haiti and Lebanon.”

“Your music and singing,” said the Pope, will help to open hearts so those who suffer will not be forgotten - “which brings joy to so many families who wish to give their children a future through education.”

“In the grotto of Bethlehem, hope for humanity was kindled,” said the Pope. But he added that the pandemic has unfortunately worsened the “educational gap for millions of children and adolescents excluded from all educational activities.”

He also highlighted that there are other "pandemics" “that prevent the spread of the culture of dialogue and inclusion.”

Brotherhood through art

The light of Christmas makes us rediscover the sense of brotherhood and urges us to show solidarity with those in need, Pope Francis underlined. "In art you immediately create brotherhood; with art, there are no friends and enemies, we are all equal, all friends, all brothers. Yours is a fruitful language.”

“Investing in education means helping children and young people to discover and appreciate the most important values and to have the courage to look to their future with hope,” he stressed.

In conclusion, the Pope said, “in education dwells the seed of hope: hope for peace and justice, hope for beauty and goodness; hope for social harmony.”

15 December 2021, 10:26