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As Investigation Ramps Up, Prayers Offered for Victims of Malaysian Airline Crash

AP/Vadim Ghirda

Aleteia - published on 07/19/14



 U.S. Ambassador Samantha Power told the meeting that Russia has provided SA-11s and other heavy weapons to the separatists.

Ukraine on Saturday accused Russia of helping separatist rebels destroy evidence at the crash site — a report the rebels denied. AP reported that armed separatists hampered access to the site Saturday, limiting the movements of international monitors and raising concerns that evidence showing who brought the plane down would be lost, tampered with or destroyed.

In Moscow, Deputy Russian Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov questioned Ukraine’s willingness to present a full accounting of its inventory of surface-to-air and air-to-air missiles in the region.

On July 18, during a news conference, President Barack Obama said the crash is a “wake-up call for Europe,” saying that “outrageous event underscores it’s time for peace and security to be restored in Ukraine.”

Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak pledged that a Malaysian disaster assistance team would be dispatched to the area and that “no stone will be left unturned” in bringing those responsible to justice.

The location of the black boxes remains a mystery and the separatist leadership remained adamant Saturday that it had not located them. Aviation experts say, however, not to expect too much from the flight data and cockpit voice recorders in understanding how Flight 17 was brought down. The most useful evidence that’s likely to come from the crash scene is whether missile pieces can be found in the trail of debris that came down as the plane exploded, said John Goglia, a U.S. aviation safety expert and former National Transportation Safety Board member.

Across the Netherlands, at sports clubs, schools and churches, friends met Saturday to console each another and attempt to come to terms with their loss.

King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands commented that he was “deeply saddened by this horrible news” and that his country’s “thoughts go to the families, friends and colleagues of the victims.”

Bishop Jozef Point of Haarlem-Amsterdam expressed the diocese’s prayers and condolences to the families of the victims, and invited “all believers to pray for the victims and their families,” particularly at a Mass Sunday at the Cathedral to be held in honor of the victims.

Cardinal Willem Eijk of Utrecht also assured families that his archdioceses was praying “for the repose of the people involved in this tragedy,” saying that for loved ones of the deceased “a time of great uncertainty and mourning has come.”

Bishop Kevin Farrell of Dallas tweeted July 18 asking his followers to “Please keep in your prayers those affected by the tragedy of the Malaysia Airlines plane disaster. Have mercy on them, Lord.”

The Archdiocese of Kuala Lumpur expressed their sorrow over the crash in a blog post asking mourners to turn to God rather than revenge, anger, or blame.

The diocese prayed that those responsible may gain a “profound understanding for the evil of their actions,” and seek forgiveness from God, that God may give the families of victims “consolation in their mourning,” and that the victims themselves may find eternal rest and peace in God.

Catholic News Agency and AP contributed to this report. 

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