DAILY CATHOLIC     THURSDAY     January 28, 1999     vol. 10, no. 19

from a CATHOLIC perspective

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          BOGOTA (CWNews.com) - Archbishop Alberto Giraldo Jaramillo of Medellin, president of the Colombian Bishops' Conference, issued an urgent statement on Tuesday calling for a campaign of solidarity with the victims of the earthquake that hit the country on Monday.

          The earthquake affected the eastern, coffee-producing region of Armenia, Pereira, and Manizales. According to official reports, half of the city of Armenia has been destroyed and at least 300 dead and 1,200 injured have been reported, but the figures may rise as rescue operation continue. "In this year devoted to God the Father and focused on the virtue of Charity, the painful tragedy of our brothers and sisters in the coffee region is a test to our Christian fraternity," said Archbishop Giraldo in the statement.

          "Once again, the pain of those who have lost their loved ones and are now homeless is knocking at the doors of our hearts," the document said, making reference to the earthquake that devastated the same region in 1995. "It is Christ who is showing his suffering face in our brethren and who invites us to break all indifference and attachment to our goods and give our best to God in the person of the affected."

          "We only own before God what we give generously to the ones in need," he added. Archbishop Giraldo called priests, religious, and committed laymen to launch a collection that will take place on Sunday, January 31 at the parishes and on February 1 in all other Catholic institutions such as schools, colleges, and hospitals. "The help will be sent immediately to our fellow bishops of Armenia and Pereira, as a sign of ecclesial communion," he concluded.

Articles provided through Catholic World News and Church News at Noticias Eclesiales. Both CWN and NE are not affiliated with the Daily CATHOLIC but provides this service via e-mail to the Daily CATHOLIC Monday through Friday.

January 28, 1999       volume 10, no. 19


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