Pope Francis met with the employees of the Vatican at the Paul VI Hall. They greeted him with great enthusiasm, as he blessed them. This boy even got a very special autograph.
The Pope explained that he couldn't celebrate his second Christmas as Pope without thanking them for their good job.
"I wanted to meet all the people who work here without being seen and who ironically call themselves ‘the unknown,’ the ‘invisible:’ the gardeners, the cleaners, the ushers, the office heads, the lift operators, the pontifical secretaries and many, many, others...”
He explained that they also belong to the Church and encouraged them to take care of their spiritual life, their families and work. He called on them to create a friendly working atmosphere.
"I know that sometimes we talk bad of others to keep our job and protect ourselves...I understand these situations but it isn't a good path to follow. Because eventually it can destroy us all, right? It's not good. Ask the Lord for the wisdom to hold your tongue in time, huh? To say no insults that leave a bitter aftertaste in the mouth.”
He told them that Christmas is a celebration of poverty, not of consumerism. His last comment made all the Vatican workers break into applause.
"I cannot finish these words of greeting without asking you to forgive any mistake, mine and those of my collaborators, and some scandals that were really harmful. Forgive me.”
Pope Francis said goodbye as he wished them a Merry Christmas and, as usual, asked them to pray for him.