Latest Newscast: Pope Delivers Christmas Message, State Funds Amtrak Improvements, Mayor Bloomberg Becomes a Grandfather

Wednesday, December 25, 2013


Good morning, here are the latest headlines from the WNYC newsroom.

Pope Francis says too many lives have been shattered by the conflict in Syria. In his Christmas Day message this morning, Francis also prayed for victims of violence in other countries, such as South Sudan and the Central African Republic. He spoke from the central balcony of St. Peter's Basilica to tens of thousands of people.

Federal officials say they're giving the state $18.5 million to reduce delays and improve service on the railroad in Syracuse. The U.S. Department of Transportation says the money will be used to cut passenger and freight train congestion on Amtrak's Empire Corridor at the Syracuse station.

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is a grandfather. A spokeswoman for Bloomberg's daughter Georgina says she gave birth to a son around 4:30 p.m. Tuesday. The child's name is Jasper Michael Brown Quintana. His father is Ramiro Quintana, a professional equestrian from Argentina.

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