Prelate says Pope Francis is expected to pray over the mass grave of those who died during super typhoon 'Yolanda'

December 16, 2014 11:35 pm 

MANILA, Dec. 16 — Pope Francis is expected to pray over the mass grave of those who died during super typhoon “Yolanda” in Palo, Leyte in November last year.

Msgr. Bernie Pantin, vicar general of the Archdiocese of Palo and parish priest of the Cathedral of Our Lord’s Transfiguration, said the pontiff will bless the grave after his meeting with the priests, religious, and laity who survived "Yolanda."

According to an article posted on the Papal Visit 2015 website, after the meeting, the Pope will go out of the sacristy and proceed to the Palo Cathedral mass grave, for his private prayers.

Pope Francis will then proceed to the Tacloban Airport for his flight back to Manila.

More than 6,000 people perished and thousands more were displaced when the typhoon struck Central Philippines on Nov. 8, 2013.

The Holy Father will be in Leyte on Jan. 17, 2015, the second day of his Apostolic and State Visit in the country.

Among the activities of the pontiff in the province are: the Mass at the Tacloban Airport grounds; lunch at the Archbishop’s Residence in Palo, where he will be joined by 30 survivors of typhoon "Yolanda" and the earlier Visayas earthquake; and the blessing of the Pope Francis Center for the Poor in Palo.

In October 2013, a 7.2-magnitude earthquake hit Bohol, where more than 200 people died.

Pope Francis is the third leader of the Roman Catholic to visit the country. The other two were Pope Paul VI and Pope John Paul II. (PNA)

SCS/FGP/EDS

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