Cardinal Konrad Krajewski visits the Italian island of Ischia Dec. 8, 2022, on behalf of Pope Francis to console victims of recent flooding there. / Credit: Holy See Press Office

CNA Newsroom, Dec 9, 2022 / 13:00 pm (CNA).

The prefect of the Dicastery for Charity, Cardinal Konrad Krajewski, visited the Italian island of Ischia on behalf of Pope Francis to meet with the victims of recent floods.

The floods took place in the early morning hours of Nov. 26 and have so far caused the deaths of 12 people, several serious injuries, and the evacuation of at least 200 people.

The Holy Father asked Krajewski to travel on his behalf on the solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, Dec. 8, to express his spiritual closeness.

In an interview with the local press, the Vatican official said that he visited some homes of the relatives of the deceased and also prayed in the Church of the “Santissima Annunziata” (“The Most Holy Virgin of the Annunciation”), where some of the coffins with the bodies of the deceased were placed and whose funerals will soon be conducted.

Krajewski told the people there he brought the blessing of the Holy Father and also presented rosaries to each one.

“Words fail me at this time … The important thing is discrete presence, respecting their mourning,” the papal envoy said.

The Holy Father expressed his closeness to those affected by the natural disaster at the conclusion of the Angelus prayer on Nov. 27, the first Sunday of Advent.

In addition, the pope sent a message on his official Twitter account in Italian, @Pontifex_it.

“I am close to the population of the island of Ischia, affected by the floods. I pray for the victims, for those who suffer and for all those who have come to the rescue,” the pope said.

In addition, the bishop of the Diocese of Ischia, Gennaro Pascarella, called for hope and for “a wave of spiritual and concrete solidarity” with those affected by the floods and landslides on this Italian island.

This story was first published by ACI Prensa, CNA’s Spanish-language news partner. It has been translated and adapted by CNA.

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