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“We need a respectful, mutual listening, free of ideology and predetermined agendas.” Pope Francis, Let us Dream, December 2020

After Berlin attack, German Catholics unite in prayer

In the wake of the terrorist attack on the Berlin Christmas market, Catholics across Germany were uniting to support the Christian community.

The attack has provoked strong emotions among many people, especially given that Christmas is traditionally one of Germany’s most beloved and important holidays.

The Bishop of Rottenburg-Stuttgart, Gebhard Furst, held a prayer service on 20th December, during which he called the attack a “deed of horror.”

“The past night has struck us and shaken us deeply,” Bishop Furst told attendees at Rottenburg’s Cathedral of St Martin.

He called for Christians to interrupt their daily routines with prayer services “in order to hold onto, and pray for, and think of what has happened, especially of the victims, the injured, the severely wounded, of those people who were struck and affected by this misfortune, this deed of horror.”

The bishop also called for prayers for the victims’ relatives and members of the security services. He ended the address by lighting a single candle on the stone altar to symbolise Germany’s “hope and courage toward the future.”

Picture: Women pray in front of a makeshift memorial on 20th December at the scene where a truck plowed into a crowded Christmas market the previous day in Berlin. The terrorist attack killed at least a dozen people and injured nearly 50 as it smashed through tables and wooden stands. (CNS photo/Fabrizio Bensch, Reuters).