Pope Prays for Victims of Terrorism

Also Implores God for Peace, in All Saints' Day Address

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VATICAN CITY, NOV. 1, 2004 (Zenit.org).- John Paul II offered a special prayer for victims of terrorism and for their families, as he addressed pilgrims gathered on All Saints' Day.



"Tomorrow we celebrate the annual commemoration of all the faithful who have passed away," the Pope said from the window of his study today before praying the Angelus with the faithful gathered in St. Peter's Square.

"The liturgy invites us to open our hearts to pray for all, especially for those souls most in need of God's divine mercy," he said of All Souls' Day.

"I offer a special prayer to God for all the victims of terrorism. I feel spiritually close to all their families and while I ask the Lord to relieve their sorrow, I ask him to grant peace to the world," the Holy Father said.

Of today's solemnity, he said: "'Let us all rejoice in the Lord and keep a festival in honor of all the saints.' The Eucharistic celebration today in honor for all the saints begins with this invitation to be jubilant. The pilgrim Church on earth lifts its gaze to heaven and triumphantly unites with the choirs comprised of those whom God has brought together in his glory. This is the communion of saints!"

The Pope concluded: "I pray that Mary, the Queen of all saints, helps us to faithfully follow Christ in order to reach the glory of heaven."