(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis has expressed his “spiritual closeness” to the victims of a bus accident in Spain.
On Saturday, a bus carrying pilgrims home from a day trip to Madrid ran off the road and tumbled down a 15 meter dirt embankment. Fourteen people, including a young priest, were killed, and 38 others were injured. Twenty-three people remain hospitalized.
In the telegram of condolence, addressed to the Bishop of Cartagena, Pope Francis’ Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, said the Holy Father was praying that God might “grant eternal rest to the deceased, total recovery to the injured, and comfort to those who mourn the loss of their loved ones.”
Below, please find the English translation of the telegram of condolence (original text in Spanish):
To his Excellency José Manuel Lorca Planes
Bishop of Cartagena [Spain]
Pope Francis, deeply saddened to learn of the serious traffic accident that occurred in Cieza, which has caused numerous deaths, including that of the young pastor of Bullas, Reverend Miguel Conesa Andujar, prays Your Excellency to kindly convey his spiritual closeness to all those affected in such unfortunate tragedy. In his prayer, His Holiness asks beseeches God to grant eternal rest to the deceased, total recovery to the injured, and comfort to those who mourn the loss of their loved ones.
In this time of great sadness and dismay, the Holy Father, while invoking upon the children of those noble lands the maternal protection of Mary most holy, encourages them to find in the faith the inspiration and strength of spirit to overcome these painful circumstances, and he willingly imparts upon them the comforting Apostolic Benediction as a sign of hope in the Risen Christ.
[Signed] Cardinal Pietro Parolin
Secretary of State of His Holiness
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