Pope Francis today reiterated his “profound sorrow” at the terrorist attacks in France on Friday evening that left at least 132 dead.

After praying the midday Angelus today with those gathered in St. Peter’s Square, the Holy Father said, “To the president of the Republic of France and all of its citizens, I express my deepest sorrow. I feel particularly close to the families of those who lost their lives and the wounded.”

“Such barbarity,” the Pontiff continued, “leaves us stunned and makes us question how the heart of man could come up with and carry out such horrific acts, which have shattered not only France, but the whole world.”

He condemned the “intolerable acts,” as an “unspeakable attack on the dignity of the human person.”

“I want to vigorously reaffirm that the path of violence and hate does not resolve the problems of humanity,” the Pope declared. “And that to use the name of God to justify this path is blasphemy.”

Francis invited those in the Square and those listening around the world to join in his own prayer for France: “Let us entrust the defenseless victims of this tragedy to the mercy of God. Virgin Mary, Mother of mercy, plant in the hearts of all thoughts of wisdom and resolutions of peace. 

“We ask her to protect us and to watch over the beloved French nation, the eldest daughter of the Church, all of Europe and the whole world.”

On ZENIT’s Web page:

Full text: http://www.zenit.org/en/articles/angelus-address-on-today-and-the-end-times