Worshippers at Sydney's St. Mary's Cathedral light candles for the victims of the Martin Place siege Dec. 16. Archbishop Anthony Fisher of Sydney tried to help comfort the people of the city during the Mass. CNS photo/Giovanni Portelli, The Catholic Weekly

Pope decries 'inhuman terrorist acts' in Australia, Pakistan and Yemen

  • December 17, 2014

VATICAN CITY - Pope Francis decried the "inhuman terrorist acts" that killed scores of people the previous day in Australia, Pakistan and Yemen.

At the conclusion of his weekly public audience Dec. 17, the Pope called for a moment of silence, then led the congregation in praying the Our Father for the victims.

"May the Lord welcome the dead into His peace, comfort their relatives and convert the hearts of the violent who do not spare even children," the Pope said.

On Dec. 16, gunmen of the Pakistani Taliban killed 141 people, mostly children, at a military-run school in the city of Peshawar; car bombs killed at least 31 people, including 20 children, in the Yemeni town of Radaa; and two hostages died along with their kidnapper when police stormed a cafe in Sydney after a 16-hour siege.

In the wake of the "barbaric attack" on the Peshawar school, Archbishop Joseph Coutts of Karachi, president of the Pakistan Catholic Bishops' Conference, issued a statement Dec. 17 urging Christians to celebrate Christmas "in a sombre manner as mark of respect for all victims of terror attacks."

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