Amid crying babies beneath Michelangelo's famous frescoes, Pope Francis issued a simple advice to parents: never fight in front of your children.
As tradition dictates, the pope baptized newborn babies in the Sistine Chapel on Sunday to celebrate the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord, which signals the end of the Christmas season in Catholic liturgy.
During his brief homily, Francis reminded parents that although it is normal for couples to fight, they should serve as a good example for their children.
"Excuse me, but I give you this advice: Never fight in front of your children. Never. It is normal for spouses to fight; it is normal. The opposite would be strange. Do it, but without them hearing it, so that they do not see it," the pope, speaking in Italian, said.
"You do not know the anguish a child experiences when he or she sees his or her parents fight."
As he did in the previous years, Francis again reminded the parents to be comfortable and let the children cry even during Mass.
"I tell you: let them be comfortable. Be careful not to cover them too much and if they cry of hunger, feed them. To the mothers I say: let the children eat. Be calm, the Lord wants it. Because they – why worry? – have a polyphonic vocation. One begins to cry and another responds, and another... and in the end, is this chorus of tears," the pope added.
This year, the pontiff baptized 12 boys and 15 girls who are children of Vatican employees.