By Baris Seckin
VATICAN CITY (AA) - Pope Francis held a midnight mass Tuesday at the Vatican as part of traditional Christmas Eve celebrations.
In the ceremony at St. Peter's Basilica, the Pope sanctified those who attended the ritual and commemorated the birth of Jesus Christ.
Turkey's temporary acting ambassador to the Vatican, Can Mutluer, attended the ceremony along with ambassadors who are accredited to the Vatican.
The spiritual leader of the Catholic world will deliver the traditional Urbi et Orbi address to the faithful in St. Peter’s Square at noon on Christmas Day.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan also wished a Merry Christmas on Monday to all those celebrating the holiday in Turkey and across the world.
Erdogan highlighted the role of Turkish tradition as well as the "utmost care" in the country to ensure that nobody was discriminated against based on "race, language, religion or denomination."
For Christians, Christmas marks the birth of Jesus Christ.
One of the most significant celebrations in Christian culture, Christmas Eve is observed by most non-Orthodox Christians on Dec. 24 every year.
*Writing by Dilara Hamit in Ankara