By Vatican Radio staff writer
The 40th Christmas tree to light up the season in St. Peter’s Square hails from the northern Italian Trentino region where it was chosen in line with the Vatican’s policies for sustainability and respect for the environment.
The St. Peter’s Square Christmas tree tradition was started in 1982 by Pope Saint John Paul II.
This year’s red fir (Picea abies) comes from the Paganella area of the Dolomite mountains on the Italian border with Austria. It arrived in the Vatican accompanied by certification it was harvested according to a sustainable forestry project. It also came complete with handmade wooden Christmas decorations.
As has been the policy in the past years, the Vatican Governorate is in charge of “lighting” with a low-energy consumption LED electric system.
After being unveiled, the tree will be on show for pilgrims and tourists at the center of the Square, right next to the Nativity Scene until Sunday, 9 January 2022. The Nativity Scene this year has been donated to the Vatican by Peruvian authorities and pays tribute to an ancient Andean indigenous people and culture.