Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes: AP reports that standing by a part of the Apollo 8 spacecraft he once rode, retired astronaut James Lovell read the 1968 Christmastime broadcast from the day he and two others became the first humans to orbit the moon marking the 45th anniversary of the orbit and the famous broadcast. "The idea of bringing people together by a flight to the moon where we encompassed everybody in our thoughts is still very valid today," says Lovell. "The words that we read are very appropriate." Millions tuned in on Dec. 24, 1968, when Frank Borman, Bill Anders and Lovell circled the moon. A television camera on board took footage of the crater-filled surface as the astronauts read Bible verses describing the creation of Earth. They circled 10 times and began reading from the Book of Genesis on the last orbit. "It's a foundation of Christianity, Judaism and Islam," Lovell said of choosing Genesis. "It is the foundation of most of the world's religions.
... They all had that basis of the Old Testament." Lovell says at the time the astronauts weren't sure who would be listening and how the broadcast would be taken. The famous "Earthrise" photo was also taken during the mission. Lovell closed with the same message the astronauts did in 1968. "From the crew of Apollo 8, we close with good night, good luck, a Merry Christmas and God bless all of you, all of you on the good Earth."