Archbishop tells people of Glasgow: "Do not be afraid, God is with us"
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Archbishop tells people of Glasgow: "Do not be afraid, God is with us"

 
 
Picture: bbc.co.uk
 
The Archbishop of Glasgow, Philip Tartaglia, has encouraged the people of the city to turn to God in their grief as they come to terms with the tragic loss of six lives in Monday's road accident in George Square. 
 
The Archbishop presided over Mass at the city's St Andrew's Cathedral as government ministers, council executives and officials from other faith groups gathered to remember the dead. 
 
Archbishop Tartaglia, in referring to today's scripture readings, suggested that, despite all the sadness and suffering we are currently experiencing, we must remember that we are not alone.  He said: "Do not be afraid, God is with us.  Believe in Him and support our suffering people." 
 
The Archbishop also spoke of his time with the family of Erin McQuade, and Jack and Lorraine Sweeney, all members of the one family who lost their lives along with Stephenie Tait, Gillian Ewing and Jacqueline Morton. 
He said: "The distressed woman to whom I was speaking had seen her daughter and her own parents killed almost right in front of her. Can you imagine the horror?
"I tried to console them and comfort them. We spoke and we cried and we were silent before the abyss of their loss and the random meaninglessness of what had happened." 
 
Archbishop Tartaglia said the bereaved family "openly spoke of their faith, but their faith was sorely tried", adding: "I commended them silently to God that the Lord would find the way to bring them comfort."
 
The Apostolic Nuncio, Archbishop Antonio Mennini, sent his condolences to the families and the city and, speaking on behalf of Pope Francis, said that all can be certain of his continuing prayers at this difficult time.
 
The Mass, which was so well attended that it was eventually standing room only, was a beautiful offering to God of the lives of the six people who had died.  It was also a beautiful offering of the suffering being endured by those close to them and all those affected by the tragedy.  We must hope and pray that all is not lost in God's divine plan and that He, in His love and infinite mercy, will unite those families again in His heavenly kingdom.
 
Again, we pray...
 
Eternal rest grant unto them O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them, may the rest in peace. Amen.
May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen. 
 
And for the bereaved, the injured and those suffering from witnessing the incident or from providing emergency assistance...
 
Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now, and at the hour of our death. Amen.

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