Radio Vaticana - Pope's Christmas Message and Urbi et Orbi Blessing: December 25, 2016

Live, off-air, approximately thirty-five-minute recording of the 2016 Christmas Message and "Urbi et Orbi" Blessing of Pope Francis as broadcast by Radio Vaticana (Vatican Radio) on 25 December 2016 beginning at 10:55 UTC on a shortwave frequency of 9645 kHz. This broadcast originated from a 100 kW transmitter at Santa Maria di Galevia, north of Rome, and was beamed to western Europe with an antenna beam azimuth of 330°.    

This was the "ambient sound" version of the Radio Vaticana broadcast as picked up by various microphones with no voice-over commentary. The first approximately five minutes of the broadcast consists of just crowd noise. At about the five-minute mark in the recording, corresponding to about 11:00 UTC, commands of the Pontifical Swiss Guard can be heard. This is followed by abbreviated versions of The Pontifical Hymn ("Motetum Vaticanum") and the Italian national anthem ("Il Canto degli Italiani") as played by the Band of the Pontifical Swiss Guard and the Carabinieri Band of the Italian Armed Forces. The appearance of Pope Francis on the central loggia of St. Peter's Basilica is greeted with cheers. He delivered, in Italian, his annual Christmas message ahead of the traditional blessing "Urbi et Orbi" (to the city [Rome] and to the world). He also recited the Angelus prayer and the plenary indulgence (in Latin). Following his speech, there was a military salute to Pope Francis with abridged versions again of the anthems. The Bells of St. Peter's peal as the Swiss Guard and the Carabinieri exchange salutes, concluding the broadcast. 

The broadcast was received by the Web-interface wideband software-defined radio at the University of Twente in Enschede, The Netherlands, with a "Mini-Whip" antenna in AM mode with 9.0 kHz total bandwidth RF filtering. Reception was excellent with a strong interference-free signal capturing almost all of the transmitted audio bandwidth.