Tamil Nadu (Fides Agency) - “At midnight people were very much touched by the news of the Pope’s death. Masses were celebrated immediately in all the major churches. All the dioceses had a day of mourning, to celebrate Mass and gather the people,” says brother Victor General, of the Franciscan missionary brothers, the Provincial Superior of Tamil Nadu. In the diocese of Trichy a mass was celebrated in the Cathedral and all the believers were invited to a gathering of prayer. The Bishops’ Council of Tamil Nadu issued a statement signed by Msg. Peter Fernando, Archbishop of Madurai and President of the Bishops’ Council. “The leaders of all religions express their feelings of sadness and their condolences to the Catholic Church. The Government of India proclaimed three days of mourning” the Bishops write in their message. The Indian authorities are expected at the Holy Father’s funeral. The Indian Government takes part in the sorrow of the Catholics, but also “the press and the TV constantly broadcast news on the Pope’s death. The people’s general feelings are of sadness and sorrow”.
(RG) (Fides Agency 7/4/2005)