Pope abandons audience speech, prays rosary for Italy’s earthquake victims

Pope Francis turned his weekly general audience into a prayer service, leading the recitation of the sorrowful mysteries of the rosary after a major earthquake hit central Italy, virtually destroying one town and affecting many others.

“On hearing the news of the earthquake that has struck central Italy and which has devastated many areas and left many wounded, I cannot fail to express my heartfelt sorrow and spiritual closeness to all those present in the zones afflicted,” Francis said.

He offered his condolences to all who have lost loved ones, and his expressed his spiritual closeness to those who are “anxious and afraid.” Read more

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