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Site of Valencia Accident To Be Pope’s First Stop

VATICAN CITY, JULY 6, 2006 ( Pope Benedict XVI will pray at the subway station in Valencia where the derailment of a train on Monday left 41 people dead and more than 40 injured.

In statements reported by the Valencia Archdiocese’s AVAN agency, Vatican spokesman Joaquín Navarro Valls said on Wednesday that “the Holy Father wants his first engagement in Valencia to be prayer for the victims of this terrible accident and for their families in the place where it occurred.”

“The Pope’s wish this morning has been to look into this possibility and see if it can be done,” indicated Navarro Valls, who specified that the Holy Father “is very conscious of the grief of the victims’ families.”

“He wishes to go to the place of the accident and to be present to pray. Consideration is now being given to how it can be done,” said the Vatican spokesman, adding that Benedict XVI has prayed constantly for the deceased in the tragic accident and for their families.”

“Ever since he heard the first news of the accident, the Holy Father wanted to be kept constantly informed,” Navarro Valls said. “He prays for the victims and their families.”

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