The faithful are rallying around the residents of New York City after a terror attack yesterday that left eight people dead and 11 wounded.
According to the Catholic News Agency, Pope Francis prayed for victims of yesterday’s attack which occurred when a 29 year-old citizen of Uzbekistan named Sayfullo Saipov, drove a rented pick-up truck into pedestrians on a bicycle path just blocks away from where the World Trade Center once stood. The attacker then struck a school bus, injuring several children before shouting Allahu Akbar and attempting to flee. Police shot him in the abdomen and he was rushed to a nearby hospital where is expected to recover.
After condemning the murder of innocent men and women in the name of God, the pope said: “We ask the Lord to convert the hearts of terrorists and free the world from hatred and from the murderous folly that abuses the name of God to spread death.”
Cardinal Timothy Dolan released a statement shortly after the attack expressing the nation’s horror at yet another senseless act of violence.
“Today our city and our nation are stunned and horrified by another act of senseless violence. While details continue to emerge, one thing is clear: once again, no matter our religion, racial or ethnic background, or political beliefs, we must put our differences aside and come together in faith and love to support those who are injured, pray for those who have died as well as their families and loved ones, and work towards greater respect and understanding among all people so that heinous and evil acts like this become a thing of the past.”
Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, who serves as president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops expressed similar sentiments.
“This horrendous act weighs on all of our hearts. Reports about the attack are too preliminary to understand fully what has happened, but it grieves me deeply that we must again respond to such acts of terror,” he said in a statement released shortly after the attack.
“To the family and friends of those who have died, please know that you are not alone, and that the prayers of the Bishops and of all the Church are with you and your loved ones. To you and to everyone, I would like to say that the forces of darkness always try to wipe away our hope; but our hope is in the name of the Lord and will always remain firm. Let us remember the words of the Lord to prophet Joshua: be strong and steadfast! Do not fear nor be dismayed, for the LORD, your God, is with you wherever you go.”
Let us join with our Church in praying for repose of the souls of the dead, for comfort for the survivors, and the conversion of heart for the perpetrators of terrorism both in our country and around the world.
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