Christ Still Comes to Bring Justice and Peace, Pope Says

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VATICAN CITY, DEC. 10, 2003 ( As was true 2,000 years ago, Christ comes to the hearts of people this Christmas to bring justice and peace, John Paul II says.

Before bidding farewell today to the thousands of pilgrims at the general audience in Paul VI Hall, the Pope had special greetings for young people, newlyweds and the sick. Some of the latter were in the front seats.

"During Advent, a time of waiting that prepares us for Christmas, Mary, the Virgin of Hope, is especially present," the Holy Father said in his greeting.

"I put you all in her hands so that you can prepare yourselves to receive Christ who comes to realize his Kingdom of justice and peace," he concluded in Italian.