PAPAL TELEGRAM FOR VICTIMS OF HOSPITAL EXPLOSION IN IRAQ
Cardinal Pietro Parolin, Vatican secretary of State, sent a telegram of condolences in Pope Francis’ name to Archbishop Mitja Leskovar, the apostolic nuncio in Iraq, for the victims of a fire that occurred yesterday in the Imam Hussein Hospital in Nassiriya, Iraq.
“His Holiness Pope Francis sends the assurance of his spiritual closeness to all affected by the tragic fire at the Covid isolation ward of the al-Hussein hospital in Nassiriya. Deeply saddened, he prays especially for those who have died and for the comfort of their families and friends who mourn their loss. Upon the patients, staff and caregivers he invokes God’s blessings of consolation, strength and peace.”
Reuters reported at 4:45 this afternoon (European time) that the death toll has reached 92, with more than 100 injured. The coronavirus ward was gutted after an oxygen tank exploded. A hospital medic said this was a tragedy waiting to happen. A similar fire in Baghdad in April killed 82.
POPE PAYS TRIBUTE TO CARDINAL MONSENGWO: “A MAN OF JUSTICE AND PEACE”
In a telegram of condolences for the death of Cardinal Monsengwo Pasinya, archbishop emeritus of Kinshasa, Pope Francis describes him as “a man of justice, peace and unity” with a preferential option for the poor.
By Vatican News staff writer
In the telegram addressed to Congolese Cardinal Fridolin Ambongo Besengu, Pope Francis recalled the service of the archbishop emeritus of Kinshasa, who died Sunday in a French hospital. (vatican media photo)
Expressing his sadness for the death of Cardinal Laurent Monsengwo Pasinya, the Pope said he sends his deepest condolences to the Church and the faithful in the Democratic Republic of Congo and to the Cardinal’s family.
Asking the Father of all mercy to welcome him into His peace and light, he described Cardinal Monsengwo as a “man of science, great spiritual man and Pastor intensely devoted to the service of the Church, wherever he was called.”
The cardinal was attentive to the needs of the faithful, filled with courage and determination. “He dedicated his life as a priest and bishop to the inculturation of the faith and to the preferential option for the poor. In this way, he embodied the prophetic mission of the Church. A man of justice, peace and unity, he has been deeply involved in integral human development in the Democratic Republic of Congo.”
Cardinal Monsengwo, Pope Francis continued, “was a great and respected figure in the ecclesial, social and political life of the nation and was always committed to dialogue and reconciliation of his people. His contribution has been significant for the progress of the country. A faithful and close collaborator in recent years, he has not ceased to make his contribution to the life of the universal Church.”
The Pope concluded the telegram by imparting his Apostolic Blessing upon the archbishop of Kinshasa, the auxiliary bishops, priests, consecrated persons, the family of the deceased Cardinal and his relatives, the diocesan faithful and all those who will take part in the celebration of the funeral.