Pope Francis sent his blessing to victims of California wildfires which have raged throughout northern California. Over thirty were confirmed dead as of Friday morning, with thousands of homes and businesses destroyed.
Hundreds of people are missing, according to authorities. The devastation has been widespread, and Officials continue working to contain the fires and access the damage. On Thursday, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection reported that at least 191,400 acres had burned so far.
The Holy Father sent a telegram, signed by the Secretary of State of the Holy See, addressed to the Archbishops of San Francisco and Los Angeles.
The Most Reverend Salvatore Joseph Cordileone
Archbishop of San Francisco
The Most Reverend José Horacio Gómez
Archbishop of Los Angeles
Informed of the tragic loss of life and the destruction of property caused by the wildfire in California, the Holy Father assures you of his heartfelt solidarity and his prayers for all those affected by this disaster. He is especially mindful of those who mourn the loss of their loved ones and who fear for the lives of those still missing. His Holiness offers encouragement to the civil authorities and emergency personnel as they assist the victims of this tragedy. To all he sends his blessing.
Cardinal Pietro Parolin
Secretary of State