Pope sends condolences after earthquake in Taiwan

Pope Francis sent condolences to Taiwan following an earthquake that left at least 37 people dead as the island prepared to celebrate Chinese New Year, reported ucanews.com.

"The Holy Father was saddened to learn of the suffering caused by the deadly earthquake which struck Tainan, leaving many people dead or seriously injured," read a message sent by Cardinal Pietro Parolin, Vatican secretary of state, on behalf of the pope.

Advertisement

The magnitude-6.4 quake hit the southern city of Tainan early Feb. 6. Two people were rescued from the ruins of an apartment building on the morning of Feb. 8, more than 48 hours after it collapsed on itself.

A woman was pulled out of the rubble underneath the body of her husband with their 2-year-old son also found dead nearby, Taiwanese media reported. A man was found alive shortly afterward, but he had severe injuries.

At least 527 people have been injured and many more have lost their homes as the quake also forced the cancellation of trains a day before the island began celebrating Chinese New Year.

Ucanews.com reported that Archbishop John Hung Shan-chuan of Taipei, president of the Taiwan bishops' conference, called on Catholics to pray for victims during his Chinese New Year Mass Feb. 7.

Tainan Diocese was among religious groups and other donors who together submitted NT$400 million (US$12 million) in goods after the earthquake, causing authorities to run out of storage space. Cash donations have since been requested instead.

"After the earthquake, the diocese started handing out necessities like water and clothes," said Father Joseph Lee, a priest in Tainan.

At least two Catholic churches were among a number of religious buildings reported damaged in historic Tainan, the oldest city in Taiwan.

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.

Advertisement

Don't miss the best from America

Sign up for our Newsletter to get the Jesuit perspective on news, faith and culture.

The latest from america

Alan Jacobs has dedicated most of his career to bridging gaps not only between Christians and non-Christians but also between disciplines and audiences.
David J. MichaelApril 23, 2018
 Pope Francis greets an elderly woman as he meets with people in a poor neighborhood in Asuncion, Paraguay, in this July 12, 2015, file photo. Pastoral care of the poor and those in need has been emphasis of the pontificate of Pope Francis. (CNS photo/Paul Haring)
Pope Francis has brought the legacy of the great saint of Assisi to the very heart of the church’s proclamation to the modern world.
Robert W. McElroyApril 23, 2018
Cuba’s new leader may feel he has to show public fealty to the older generation of the country’s revolutionary leaders.
Philip BrennerApril 23, 2018
It takes us a while to celebrate the Resurrection.
James Martin, S.J.April 23, 2018