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December 20, 2014
Vatican Christmas tree lighting in St. Peter's Square on Dec. 19, 2014. Credit: Elise Harris/CNA.

.- The 83-foot Italian tree in St. Peter's Square was lit for the first time this season at the unveiling of the Vatican's nativity scene, which Pope Francis called a sign of “light, hope and love” for the world.

Christian families displaced by violence in India's Odisha state in 2008. Credit: Aid to the Church in Need.

.- The rise in attacks by Hindu radicals against members of minority religions in India, primarily Christians and Muslims, is drawing concern across the country, with many calling for more concrete government action.

TOP HEADLINES
.- “To communicate is to unify” is the first of the “Ten Words of Communication” that Fr. Federico Lombardi, director of the Holy See press office, described in a lecture given Nov. 24 at the Pontifical Salesian University in Rome.
.- Nigerian gunmen suspected to be with the militant Islamist group Boko Haram reportedly killed 35 people and kidnapped about 200 young men, women and children in northeast Nigeria on Sunday.
.- Pope Francis cautioned Christians against an egoism that excludes the need for God in his homily at Mass on Friday, saying this attitude renders our lives sterile and prevents the Church from bearing fruit.
.- A small community radio station in rural Uganda, running almost entirely on solar power, is spreading the Gospel and giving “voice to the voiceless” in regions of conflict and suffering.