.- Pope Benedict XVI has sent a brief letter to the Archbishop of Caracas, Cardinal Jorge Urosa Savino, in which he expresses his “closeness and solidarity in this unfortunate circumstance,” after the attack by Chavez sympathizers against the cardinal on December 7.
In the letter which was made public yesterday on the website of the Venezuelan Bishops’ Conference and dated December 9, 2007, the Holy Father said, “Having learned with alarm the news of the aggression suffered by your Eminence from a violent group on December 7, I wish to express to you my sincere closeness and solidarity in this unfortunate circumstance, and at the same time I wish to assure you a special place in my prayers, to sustain you and encourage you in the faithful fulfillment of your pastoral mission.”
“As a sign of consolation and esteem, I cordially impart to you the Apostolic Blessing, which I extend to the pastors and the faithful of this beloved nation,” the Pope said in conclusion.
On December 7, a group of some fifteen Chavez sympathizers harassed the cardinal as he left is residence. “When I left my residence in my car with my driver, I was violently verbally and physically assaulted, although I was not hit. Only my car was damaged,” the cardinal revealed in a letter to his fellow bishops.