Papal Condolences for Hurricane Victims in U.S.

VATICAN CITY, AUG. 31, 2005 ( In a message to the civil and ecclesiastical authorities of the United States, Benedict XVI expressed his condolences for the victims of Hurricane Katrina.

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In a telegram, sent today by Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Angelo Sodano, the Pope “assures all those affected of his closeness in prayer. The Holy Father commends the deceased to the loving mercy of Almighty God, and upon their grieving families he invokes divine blessings of strength and consolation.”

It added: “His Holiness likewise prays for the rescue workers and all involved in providing assistance to the victims of this disaster, encouraging them to persevere in their efforts to bring relief and support.”

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