Fri, Sep 04, 2009 - Page 1 News List

Vatican envoy to travel to typhoon-devastated areas


An envoy of Pope Benedict XVI will arrive in Taiwan this weekend for a week-long visit, during which he is expected to go to areas devastated by Typhoon Morakot to console victims of the disaster, officials said yesterday.

Cardinal Paul Cordes, president of the Pontifical Council Cor Unum, will participate on the pope’s behalf at an international conference on humanitarian aid scheduled for Monday to Friday at Taipei’s Fu Jen Catholic University.

Wang Yu-yuan (王豫元), Taiwan’s ambassador to the Holy See, said in a telephone interview that his embassy is making arrangements for Cordes to visit disaster areas in southern Taiwan to convey the pope’s concern for victims.

Given Cordes’ close relationship with the pope and his influence in the Holy See, his visit fully demonstrates the importance the pope attaches to relations with Taiwan, Wang said.

Officials at the Catholic Archdiocese of Taipei said eight other cardinals and 50 bishops from other countries, including South Korea, Japan and the Philippines, will also attend the conference.

Liu Chen-chung (劉振忠), bishop of the Catholic Archdiocese of Kaohsiung, said that the participants may visit typhoon-affected areas, especially those in hard-hit Kaohsiung County, to pray for the victims.

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