Pope Benedict praying for injured and dead in train explosion


Upon learning that a freight train derailed and exploded Monday night in northern Italy, Pope Benedict expressed his sorrow and promised to pray for the souls of the 13 who died as well as for the recovery of all who were injured.

The incident occurred in Viareggio, Italy late on Monday night as the train was on its way from La Spieza to Pisa.  As it reached Viareggio, it derailed, crashing into a neighborhood, where a freight car filled with liquefied natural petroleum exploded and set fire to the area, the Associated Press reports.

The latest estimates say that 13 people were killed by the accident and more than 50 were injured by the blaze.

After learning of the tragedy on Tuesday morning, a telegram was sent to Archbishop Benvenuto Italo Castellani of Lucca, Italy, in which the Pope expressed “his heartfelt participation in the suffering afflicting the entire city” as well as “his fervent prayers for the souls of those who have so tragically died.”

Additionally, the Holy Father invoked “from the Lord a speedy recovery for the injured” and entrusted those impacted by the tragedy “to the maternal protection of the Virgin Mary.”

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