General Audience, December 20, 2000

Christmas is an Invitation to Cooperate With God’s Plan Pope John Paul II General Audience December 20, 2000 Dear Brothers and Sisters, In a few days, we shall celebrate the Birth of the Lord Jesus, who came among us to redeem us by his death on the Cross. This Christmas is special, occurring as it does at the close of the Jubilee Year, during which we have celebrated more intensely the mystery of the Incarnation. Our thoughts turn to the stable of Bethlehem, where God became man in order to bring joy and peace, reconciliation and a spirit of brotherhood to humanity. We can best celebrate this event through prayer and by welcoming the gift of God’s love ever more fully into our lives. Christmas is an invitation to cooperate with God’s plan by committing ourselves more generously to the cause of peace and understanding among peoples. In this way the message of peace which the angels announced to the shepherds at Bethlehem will become a reality in our lives. I welcome the English-speaking pilgrims and visitors present. As we prepare for the coming of Christ, I ask Almighty God to bless you and your families with his gifts of joy and peace. I wish you all a happy and blessed Christmas!

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