Pope prays for rescuers, victims of deadly quake in New Zealand

VATICAN CITY — Pope Benedict XVI prayed for the victims of a devastating earthquake in New Zealand and encouraged those involved in rescue efforts. "My thoughts turn especially to the people there who are being severely tested by the tragedy," he said Feb. 23 during his weekly general audience. He expressed concern for the "considerable loss of life and the disappearance of many people, to say nothing of the damage to buildings."

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