In the Middle East, a Mass was celebrated in the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem in the West Bank. Thousands of faithful and tourists converged on the town where Christians believe Jesus was born.
Pope Benedict delivered his Christmas message Tuesday, to about 50-thousand people gathered at Saint Peter's Square in Vatican City.
He spread a hopeful message to his followers, calling for peace in many of the world's hot spots.
"May peace spring up for the people of Syria, deeply wounded and divided by a conflict which does not spare even the defenseless and reaps innocent victims," The Pope said.
From Syria to northern Nigeria, the leader of the Catholic Church urged dialogue and the protection of civilians.
"Once again, I appeal for an end to the bloodshed, easier access for the relief of refugees and the displaced, and dialogue in the pursuit of a political solution to the conflict," The Pope said.
He also spoke Christmas blessings in 65 languages.