VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis has sent a telegram to the archbishop of San Antonio, Texas, to express his condolences for the deadly shooting at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs.

The telegram was sent Tuesday by the Vatican’s secretary of state, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, who said the pope was “deeply grieved by news of the loss of life and grave injuries caused by the act of senseless violence.”

The pontiff sent condolences to “the families of the victims and the wounded, to the members of the congregation and the entire local community.”

Francis also offered prayers for mourners to “grant them the spiritual strength that triumphs over violence and hatred by the power of forgiveness, hope and reconciling love.”

Twenty-six people were killed in Sunday’s attack at the Texas church.

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