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Pope prays for terrorism victims on All Saints Day

Observing yesterday's Feast of All Saints, and anticipating today's Feast of All Souls, Pope John Paul II has offered special prayers for the victims of terrorism.

"I feel spiritually close to their families and, while I ask the Lord to ease their pain, I pray to him for peace in the world," the pope said yesterday during his midday recitation of the Angelus.

Pope John Paul told thousands of visitors gathered in St. Peter's Square on the feast of All Saints, an Italian public holiday, that the day reminds Catholics of the bond that exists between the faithful on earth and those who have died.

"The pilgrim church on earth raises its gaze toward heaven and exultantly unites with the choir of those whom God has welcomed into his glory. It is the communion of saints," the pope said.

The liturgy of today's feast, remembering all the faithful who have died, also evokes the connection between the living and the dead, urging Catholics "to open their hearts and pray for everyone, especially for the souls most in need of divine mercy," he said.

During audience at the Vatican on Saturday, Pope John Paul also urged special attention to those who are dying.

Meeting with members of the religious orders and lay movements founded by Blessed Aloysius Guanella, including the Servants of Charity and the Daughters of St. Mary of Providence, Pope John Paul had special praise for their care of the sick and differently abled.

"And what can I say of the care you have reserved for the terminally ill? Death and dying always have been a challenge not lacking in anguish," the pope said.

Observing November feasts, pope prays for victims of terrorism (Catholic News Service 1/11/04)

The Pope rejoices for the Saints in heaven and prays for the faithful departed ( 1/11/04)
Charismatics Urged to Promote Eucharist as Bond of Unity (Zenit 31/10/04)
Pope Advocates Dialogue to Overcome Split in Cyprus (Zenit 31/10/04)
Pope Hopes Christians Continue to Aid Europe (Zenit 31/10/04)
How John Paul II Changes Our Way of Seeing Saints (Zenit 31/10/04)
Remembering Christian roots "fundamental" for Europe's future, says Pope after Buttiglione steps down (Catholic News Agency 1/11/04)

2 Nov 2004