Pope Francis sends message to Australians affected by flood


Pope Francis has sent words of encouragement to people in New South Wales in Australia who were affected by the recent floods. The floods caused havoc in many homes. In less than a week, the state got two-thirds of their annual rainfall. The revered cleric sent his message at the end of his general message on March 24 saying, 

"I encourage those who are working to search for those who are missing and bring relief. I am close to the people and families who are affected by this calamity, especially those who have seen their homes destroyed."

The rains might have subsided but it made more than 18,000 people to leave their homes. According to the Australian Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, the floodwaters would stay for a while. He also described the plight of the people as extremely complex and dynamic.

The St. Vincent de Paul Society pleaded for support for those affected by the flood. Also, it proposed funds ranging from 50 Australian dollars (US$38) – which will cater for a family evicted from their home -- to AU$1,110, which is aimed at helping families get back on their feet with home appliances and furniture.

According to The Catholic Leader, which is a publication of the Archdiocese of Brisbane, St. Agnes Parish in Port Macquarie, part of the Lismore Diocese, gave 72 elderly persons emergency accommodation. Also, residents that are displaced were housed at a retreat center. At the local hospital, more beds were provided for elderly patients.

A page where people can get information on services and funding provided for victims of the flood was set up by the New South Wales state government.

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