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Catholic World News

Dozens killed in train accident at Santiago de Compostela on eve of feast day

July 25, 2013

At least 80 people were killed, and about 150 injured, when a train derailed near Santiago de Compostela, Spain, on July 24.

The accident occurred on the eve of the feast of St. James the Greater, who is buried in the renowned cathedral of Santiago de Compostela. The Spanish city is the final objective for El Camino, the traditional walking pilgrimage across Europe, and thousands of people were gathering there for the feast day of the apostle. Officials at Santiago de Compostela said that traditional celebrations for the feast would be cancelled because of the tragedy.

Pope Francis, who is in Rio de Janeiro for World Youth Day, sent a message of condolence to Archbishop Julian Barrio Barrio of Santiago de Compostela, promising his “spiritual closeness, affection, and sincere fraternal solidarity to those who have suffered in this tragedy and to their families.”


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