On the night of last November 25, a strong earthquake struck the northern coast of Albania, in the area of the city of Durazzo. To date there are dozens of victims and at least 600 wounded, but many people are still under the rubble. The quake left behind it enormous damages, collapsed buildings and hundreds of homeless and it was felt in other areas of Albania and of the Adriatic coast.
Pope Francis has decided to send an initial contribution of 100,000 euros, through the Dicastery for the Service of Integral Human Development, to aid the population in this immediate emergency phase.
In this way, the Holy Father wishes to express his spiritual closeness and paternal support towards the people and territories affected. The sum will be used, in the dioceses affected by the quake, in works of rescue and assistance, in conjunction with the Apostolic Nunciature in Albania.
In the course of the General Audience, on Wednesday, November 27, Pope Francis expressed himself thus: “I would like to send a greeting and my closeness to the dear Albanian people, which has suffered so much in these days. Albania was the first country of Europe that I wished to visit. I am close to the victims, I pray for the dead, for the wounded and for the families. May the Lord bless these people that I love so much.”
This Dicastery’s contribution, which accompanies the Holy Father’s prayer for the population of Albania, is part of the aid that is being activated in the whole Catholic Church and which involves, in addition to various Episcopal Conferences, also numerous charitable organisms.