Atlanta, Ga. 4/21/2008 12:36:29 AM
News / Religion

Pope Benedict XVI Blesses Ground Zero, Prays “God of peace, bring your peace to our violent world”

Pope Benedict XVI, in his final day of his six-day visit to the United States, made a special trip to Ground Zero and blessed the site that was the scene of the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks that claimed nearly 3,000 lives.


The pontiff arrived near the north tower, walked a few steps and knelt to pray silently. After rising to light a memorial candle Benedict turned and addressed a small group of city officials and those directly tied to the attacks.


Recognizing the victims who were killed at the Pentagon and the crash of United Airlines 93 Benedict prayed for “those who suffered death, injury and loss.” He then asked “God of peace, bring your peace to our violent world.”


Benedict then invited two dozen people who had survived the attacks, were families of victims, or acted as rescue workers, to join him. After greeting each one individually Benedict invited them to pray with him as he recognized the victims who “because of their presence here that day, suffer from injuries and illness.”


Pope Benedict XVI will depart for Rome later on Sunday.


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