Dec 25, 2019

Pope Francis at Christmas Eve mass: God loves even the worst of us

Pope delivers his homily during the Christmas Eve Mass in St. Peter's Basilica in Vatican City, Vatican. Photo: Franco Origlia/Getty Images

Pope Francis delivered a message to the world's 1.3 billion Roman Catholics during Christmas Eve Mass in St Peter's Basilica at the Vatican: "Christmas reminds us that God continues to love us all, even the worst of us."

The big picture: The BBC notes the Pope "alluded to the clerical abuse" and "financial scandals" when he said: "Whatever goes wrong in our lives, whatever doesn't work in the Church, whatever problems there are in the world, will no longer serve as an excuse ."

Photo: Baris Seckin/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
Photo: Baris Seckin/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
Photo: Baris Seckin/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
Photo: Baris Seckin/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Go deeper: Notre Dame won't hold Christmas Mass for first time since French Revolution

Go deeper

In photos: Cities around the world ring in the new year

Sydney's New Year's Eve fireworks show went ahead despite tens of thousands signing a petition imploring authorities to call it off because of Australia's deadly wildfires. Photo: Peter Parks/AFP via Getty Images

From New Zealand to New York City, crowds have gathered to ring in the new year and the start of a new decade.

The big picture: The Pacific island nations of Tonga, Samoa, and Kiribati were the first in the world to mark the arrival of 2020, when it was still 5 a.m. on New Year's Eve on the U.S. East Coast. Here's how events have been unfolding around the U.S. and the world, in photos.

See imagesArrowUpdated Jan 1, 2020

In photos: The moments that defined a decade

Obama, Biden, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and national security team members in the Situation Room of the White House on May 1, 2011, during the operation that killed Osama bin Laden in Pakistan. Photo: Pete Souza/The White House via Getty Images

The 2010s were marked by terrorism, major natural disasters, huge political upheaval and, in the U.S. in particular, political polarization.

Zoom in: The decade began with Democratic President Obama, political gridlock in the Republican-controlled Congress and surging partisanship. It's closing with Republican President Trump impeached by the Democratic-controlled House. A bright spot has been the the U.S. economy, which has steadily improved since the financial crisis of the previous decade.

See photosArrowUpdated Dec 29, 2019

In photos: Anti-war protests held across the U.S. and the world

Anti-war protesters march from the White House to Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C., on Saturday. Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images

Anti-war protesters rallied across dozens of cities in the United States and the world Saturday against potential conflict with Iran and to condemn the U.S. killing of top Iranian Gen. Qasem Soleimani.

The big picture: Act Now to Stop War and End Racism, an anti-war coalition that helped organize the U.S. events, said on its website that more than 70 rallies took place in the United States. Anti-war demonstrations were also held in countries including Germany, the United Kingdom and Canada, per German news agency DPA.

See imagesArrowJan 5, 2020