Pope prays for Ethiopia and Sierra Leone, remembers Spanish martyrs
By Vatican News staff writer
At the conclusion of the Angelus in St. Peter's Square on Sunday, Pope Francis expressed his concern over the ongoing conflict in the Horn of Africa region, particularly Ethiopia, where for more than a year now many have died and a very serious humanitarian crisis is looming. The Pope said, "I invite everyone to pray for those peoples so harshly struggling, and I renew my appeal that fraternal harmony and the peaceful path of dialogue may prevail."
The Pope also assured his prayers for victims of a fire following a fuel explosion on the outskirts of Freetown, the capital of Sierra Leone. At least 98 people were killed and several dozen more were injured when an oil tanker exploded late Friday.
In conclusion, he also paid tribute to three martyrs for the faith proclaimed in Manresa, Spain, yesterday. They three new Blesseds belonged to the Order of Friars Minor Capuchin: Benet de Santa Coloma de Gramenet, Josep Oriol de Barcelona and Domènech de Sant Pere de Riudebitlles. They were killed in the Spanish Civil War, during a time of religious persecution in the 1930s. The Pope recalled their meek and courageous witnesses to Christ, and prayed that "their example help today's Christians to remain faithful to their vocation, even in times of trial."