Full text of Archbishop Kurtz's letter follows.
May God bless you and your people during this Holy Week!
Approaching Good Friday, seeing the news from your brave and beautiful city deepens our own meditation on the Cross. Please be assured of my prayers and unwavering fraternal support. The Church throughout the United States feels this senseless act of violence as a tragedy in our own family.
Of course, the terror of the Crucifixion is overcome by the hope of the Resurrection. Through unity, courage and comforting of the victims, the people of Belgium remind me of the Apostles comforted by the Risen Lord. In the face of unspeakable violence, they refused to allow fear to be their final witness.
God so loved the world that He sent his only Son. Seeing our violent rejection of that love, God could have easily withdrawn from the world. Instead, Jesus overcame death to offer us salvation. So too let us respond to hate with love and reject the extremists who would see us abandon our most vulnerable brothers and sisters.
Today, I thank God for the powerful witness of your people in the face of terror. My prayers are with you as their shepherd.
Fraternally yours in the Lord,
Most Reverend Joseph E. Kurtz, DD
Archbishop of Louisville and President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops