Archbishop of Westminster

Cardinal Vincent Condemns Paris Attacks

In the wake of the previous evening's attacks in Paris which left many dead, Cardinal Vincent condemned the killings and offered his prayers. In a statement released 14 November he said:

'This morning I wish to express my horror at the events that took place in Paris last night. This random killing of innocent people is utterly despicable and a course of action which must be rejected unequivocally by all. 

'Today I offer my prayers, with those of the entire Catholic Community in England and Wales, for those who have been shot dead as they enjoyed moments of relaxation and entertainment. I pray for the bereaved, for those who have been traumatised. I pray for the City of Paris that it will courageously recover its poise as one of the great cities of the world. I pray for the police and security forces who will continue their frontline fight against this evil madness. I pray, too, for the Muslim communities in France, and here in England, that they may not be victimised because of the actions of these violent and ruthless extremists but strive always for the way of peace and cooperation with the wider society. 

'May God bless France. May God give us the courage and wisdom to resist this violent and inhuman extremism. May God guide us all into the ways of peace.'

Cardinal Vincent has also sent a message to Cardinal Andre Vingt-Trois, Archbishop of Paris, expressing heartfelt condolences and offering prayers for all who have died. In this message, he said:

'On this sad morning I send to you my heartfelt condolences for all who died last night at the hands of terrorists in your city of Paris. I assure you of my prayers at the moment of profound disturbance, fear and disbelief. 

'These killings are condemned by all right minded people as a crime against all that true religions hold to be true. I know that you will lead the Catholic community with wisdom and love and give that example to all who attend to your voice. 

'I am sending my greetings to the large French community here in London assuring them of my prayers and those of all our Catholic community in England and Wales. 

'May God bless France and all her people.'

Cardinal Vincent is also sending a message to the French community in London based at Notre Dame de France, the French church in Leicester Square, in which he says:

'Today I wish to express my horror at the events in Paris last night. These killings are to be utterly condemned. The random and brutal killing of innocent people is always a crime crying out to heaven. 

'I want to assure you of my thoughts and prayers this morning. I pray for all who have died, for those who have been bereaved and traumatised, for the city of Paris as it wakes to a changed world with new challenges for all who believe in peaceful cooperation and constructive engagement in all spheres of life. I pray too for the Muslim community and everyone in it who repudiates violence and who longs for peace. I assure you, too, of the prayers of the Catholic community in England and Wales today and in the weeks to come. 

'May God bless France. May God give comfort to all the citizens of Paris. May God forgive us our sins and guide us always in the ways of peace.'

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