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Pope urges prayers for Filipino storm victims, sends personal contribution to relief effort

Catholic World News - November 11, 2013

Pope Francis has sent a message of condolence to the people of the Philippines in the wake of a murderous typhoon, and followed up with a personal contribution of $150,000 to help relief efforts.

In Manila, meanwhile, the country’s Catholic bishops have acknowledged that Typhoon Haiyan brought “absolute pandemonium” to the country, and reported that the storm “may even be the worst the world has ever seen.” But the episcopal conference insisted that the people’s faith is strong enough to overcome the disaster. The Filipino bishops have begun a novena of prayers for the storm’s victims and for needy survivors.

In a telegram to President Benigno Aquino III, Pope Francis promised his prayers “for all the people of the Philippines,” and offered his encouragement to rescue workers. He sent his financial offering to support resettlement work with those who lost their homes. The typhoon caused an estimated 10,000 deaths, and left hundreds of thousands homeless. Casualty reports have been delayed because so many airports, roads, and media centers were destroyed or damaged in the region.

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