Pope John Paul II sent a telegram to Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, Archbishop of Washington, expressing his deep sadness upon learning of the death of his predecessor, Cardinal James Hickey, who died yesterday at the age of 84.
"Deeply saddened by the death of Cardinal James Aloysius Hickey, I offer heartfelt condolences to you and to all the clergy, religious and laity of he archdiocese of Washington,” reads the telegram.
The Pope recalled “with gratitude Cardinal Hickey's unfailing commitment to the spread of the Gospel, the teaching of the faith and the formation of future priests.”
“I join you in praying that God our Merciful Father will grant him the reward of his labors and welcome his noble soul into the joy and peace of His eternal kingdom. To all assembled for the solemn Mass of Christian burial, I cordially impart my apostolic blessing as a pledge of consolation and strength in the Lord."