Vatican gives $187,000 in emergency aid to Philippines

Vatican gives $187,000 in emergency aid to Philippines
Pope Francis hugs a disabled man during a meeting with the UNITALSI, the Italian Union responsible for the transportation of sick people to Lourdes and the International Shrines in PaulVI hall, at the Vatican, on November 9, 2013.

VATICAN CITY - The Vatican on Monday announced it is donating US$150,000 (112,000 euro, S$187,000) in emergency aid to the Philippines after Super Typhoon Haiyan devastated entire communities and left more than 10,000 people feared dead.

"Following the Haiyan Typhoon... the Holy Father has decided to send a first contribution of 150,000 dollars to help the population", the Vatican said in a statement.

The aid "will be distributed through the local Church in the areas worst hit by the tragedy" and will be "used to support aid operations for displaced people," it added.

The donation is intended as "a concrete expression of the pontiff's spiritual closeness and paternal support for the people and territories devastated by the floods," it said.

Pope Francis led 60,000 people in Sunday prayers for the Philippines, urging the faithful to provide "concrete help" to the largely Roman Catholic country.

"I ask all of you to join me in prayer for the victims of Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda especially those in the beloved islands of the Philippines", he tweeted on Saturday.



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