Celebrate

Thousands Visit Bethlehem for Christmas

Over 100,000 pilgrims traveled to Bethlehem to celebrate Christmas, double the number that came to pray in Jesus' birthplace last year. In other sites around the world, celebrations for the holiday were less peaceful. In Baghdad, Iraqi Christian faced threats of violence. In the Philippines, a bomb exploded at a police chapel during Christmas Day Mass. In Nigeria, at least 11 people were killed in Christmas Eve attacks. But in Bethlehem, pilgrims thronged to the Church of the Nativity. The town's hotel rooms were booked solid for a week. Good weather and warmer Israeli-Palestinian relations contributed to the cheer this year.