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Following the devastating industrial blast in Beirut on Tuesday 4th August, Cardinal Vincent offered prayers for those who suffered in the explosion and all who attended to them. In a message of support sent to Cardinal Bechara Boutros al-Rahi, Maronite Catholic Patriarch of Antioch and Head of the Maronite Church, the Cardinal writes:

'I watched with deepening horror the unfolding news of the dreadful industrial explosion in the centre of your beloved Beirut. The widespread devastation it has caused has brought such a high toll of death, injuries and destruction. This is a tragedy of immense proportions for this city and for the whole of the Lebanon.

'I pray earnestly today for you all. I know that many people will be doing so, especially within the Catholic community in England and Wales. I pray for those who have lost their lives and for their families. I pray for the injured and those who attend them. I pray for those rendered homeless or derelict through this terrible event. I raise my prayers to your great saint, Saint Charbel, whose relic adorns my chapel, that he may win for you all the courage and perseverance to meet this awesome challenge. 

'May God bless you, your people and the country of Lebanon.'


Donations to the emergency relief effort can be made to Cafod, Aid to the Church in Need or the Lebanese Maronite Order Charitable Trust (Sort Code 60-83-75, Acct 12 02 38 02, Ref Aid to Beirut), who are based at Our Lady of Lebanon Parish in Paddington, ministering to the Lebanese Maronite community in London.