TEHRAN (Press Shia) – Iranian President Hassan Rouhani sent a congratulatory message to the Pope of the Roman Catholic Church, Pope Francis, on the birth anniversary of Jesus Christ (PBUH) and beginning of the year 2019.

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In his message to the Pope, Rouhani paid tribute to Prophet Jesus (PBUH) as the messenger of freedom and equality and the prophet of peace and friendship.

The following is the text of the presidential message:

“In the Name of God, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful

Your Holiness Pope Francis,

Pope of the Catholic Church,

I am delighted to congratulate the birthday of Jesus Christ (PBUH), the Prophet of friendship and peace, and the start of year 2019 to Your Holiness.

Jesus Christ (PBUH) has promised peace, friendship, justice and freedom for people from all walks of life. Today’s human being needs to take advantage of the divine teachings of prophets more than ever to stand against the hegemony of bullies and prepare the ground for establishment of comprehensive peace and justices regardless of their color and descent towards peaceful coexistence.

I hope we will witness growing welfare, empathy and peace for all people around the world by taking advantage of the guidelines of religious scholars and thinkers, and collaboration among world leaders.

I wish Your Holiness health and success and everybody prosperity and felicity.

Hassan Rouhani

President of the Islamic Republic of Iran”

Christmas is an annual commemoration of the birth of Jesus Christ, celebrated generally on December 25 as a religious and cultural holiday by millions of people around the world.