Source: Asia News
On December 12, 2004 Asia News reported, "For John Paul II, the crèche still matters. Speaking before the Angelus, the Pope said that the scene of the Nativity of Jesus was not only 'part of our culture and art but also a sign of faith in God who, in Bethlehem, "made his dwelling among us" (John 1:14).' Boys and girls attended the traditional blessing in St Peter’s Square of the statue of the ‘Bambinello’, of the Baby Jesus, that will be placed in the crèche. In recent days, the decision taken in some schools not to set up the crèche out of respect for non Catholic pupils, especially Muslim pupils, has been front-page news. In the ensuing debate, many Muslims said they were in favour of the crèche since Islam considers Jesus a prophet. Church leaders intervened saying that those who want to remove the crèche from schools are not motivated by respect for Muslims but by secularist ideas, confusing tolerance with intellectual relativism."