Mexico’s bishops offered prayers for the victims of an explosion in which dozens of villagers in the central state of Hidalgo perished after rushing to get some of the gasoline gushing from what appears to have been an illegally tapped pipeline.
“This situation has provoked a commotion throughout the country,” the bishops wrote in a 19th January statement, “so we join the prayers and the tears shed by everyone who is suffering and crying at this time.”
Priests in the Diocese of Tula provided spiritual support, visited the injured and started the process of saying funeral Masses for the deceased. But some priests and bishops have voiced support for a government crackdown on fuel thefts, a crime that has sent the homicide rate soaring in several states.
The newspaper Reforma quoted Fr Arturo Santos said at a funeral Mass as saying: “We pray so we never have this sad, painful and – why not say it – shameful experience again.”
The explosion occurred at 6:50pm on 18th January in the town of Tlahuelilpan, 55 miles north of Mexico City, claiming 89 lives and sending dozens more to the hospital, said Hidalgo Gov. Omar Fayad.
Picture: Relatives of Cesar Jimenez Brito, 40, who was killed during a pipeline explosion, mourn during his burial at a cemetery in Tlahuelilpan, Mexico, on 20th January. The nation’s bishops offered prayers for the victims of the 18th January explosion, in which dozens of villagers in the central state of Hidalgo perished after rushing to get some of the gasoline gushing from what appears to have been an illegally tapped pipeline. (CNS photo/Henry Romero, Reuters).