Below is the Vatican-provided text of the telegram Pope Francis sent expressing condolences for the victims of a deadly fire early Sunday at a Hindu temple in the Indian state of Kerala. When a stock of fireworks exploded in the site of where a fireworks show was part of an annual religious festival, more than 108 lives were claimed and nearly 400 were injured. The telegram was sent through Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, on the Pope’s behalf:
His Holiness Pope Francis was saddened to learn of the tragic fire at the Puttingal temple complex in Paravur, and he sends condolences to the relatives of the deceased and injured. Praying for all affected by this tragedy, and for the relief efforts underway, Pope Francis invokes upon the nation the divine blessings of strength and peace.
Cardinal Pietro Parolin
Secretary of State