Vatican City, 14 July 2013 (VIS) – Following Sunday's Angelus, the Pope commemorated the massacres of Volhynia in June 1943, a tragic episode during the Second World War in which tens of thousands of people lost their lives. He said, “I join in prayer with the prelates and faithful of the Church in Ukraine, gathered in the cathedral of Lutsk for the Holy Mass of the souls of the deceased on the seventieth anniversary of the massacres at Volhynia. Those actions, provoked by nationalist ideology in the tragic context of the Second World War, claimed tens of thousands of victims and damaged the fraternity between the two peoples, the Polish and the Ukrainian. I entrust to the mercy of God the souls of the victims and, for their people, I ask the grace of profound reconciliation and of a peaceful future in hope and in sincere collaboration in building together the Kingdom of God”.
He went on to thank the pastors and faithful participating in the pilgrimage of the family of Radio Maria to Jasna Gora, Czestochowa, Poland, and greeted the faithful of the Diocese of Albano, invoking the protection of their patron St. Bonaventure, whose feast is celebrated on 15 July. “May tomorrow's feast be beautiful, and many best wishes! I'd like to send you a cake... but I don't think they can make one big enough!” he joked.
The Holy Father finally addressed the young deaf people who were present in Rome for an international meeting, the religious sisters of St. Elizabeth and the Apostles of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, as well as the Daughters of Divine Charity, holding their general chapter, and the superiors of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians.