Papal Envoy Prays at Ground Zero

Vatican Sponsors Scholarship Fund for Victims´ Children

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NEW YORK, JUNE 21, 2002 ( A papal envoy prayed at the World Trade Center site and announced a Vatican-sponsored scholarship fund for the children of victims of the Sept. 11 attacks.

«On behalf of John Paul II, I offer the people of New York, especially those who have lost a dear one in this enormous tragedy, my sincere and heartfelt prayers for consolation and strength, which are a gift of God,» said Archbishop Leonardo Sandri, substitute of the Vatican State Secretariat.

The envoy, accompanied by Cardinal Edward Egan and by Archbishop Renato Martino, permanent observer of the Vatican at the United Nations, placed flowers at the base of a steel cross at ground zero.

Cardinal Egan, the archbishop of New York, said the fund would benefit the children of police officers, firefighters, emergency workers, and health care workers who died Sept. 11, if they wish to study medicine at New York Medical College in suburban Valhalla. The amount of the fund was undisclosed.

The scholarship was named in honor of Robert John Ferris, who worked at the World Trade Center.

Archbishop Sandri said: «In his message for the 2002 World Day of Peace, John Paul II said that there cannot be peace without justice, or justice without forgiveness. It is a truth that is difficult to embrace, but we must do so, if we want our world to live in freedom and lasting peace.»

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