Pope Francis to bless center for the poor in Leyte

Pope Francis to bless center for the poor in Leyte.

PALO, Leyte, Jan. 14 – The P60 million Pope Francis Center for the Poor in this town is now ready for the Pope’s blessing on Saturday.

The blessing of the 1,414.60 square meter-facility around 3:00 p.m. will be witnessed by a thousand of nearby residents, elderly, orphans, priests, church workers and journalists.

The center will house elderly and orphans who survived super typhoon Yolanda.

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“After the lunch with 30 disaster survivors, the pope will go down to bless the facility for 15 minutes. It is also the chance for residents of Arado village, orphans, elderly and persons with disabilities to meet Pope Francis,” said Fr. Chris Arthur H. Militante, the archdiocese information and social communications officer.

Named as the Pope Francis Center for the Poor, the facility is located within the compound of the Archbishop residence in Arado village, in this town, the seat of Roman Catholicism in Eastern Visayas.

The five-building facility, named after the Church leader, was completed more than a month ago after three months of construction funded by Cor Unum, considered the Caritas of the Vatican.

The center has five structures—an administrative building, clinic, dining hall, home for the elderly and home for the orphans. The two sleeping quarters can accommodate 40 persons each.

“We have not yet started the process of identifying elderly and orphans who will be accommodated in the center, but we will give priority Yolanda survivors who are really in need,” Militante said.

Since the archdiocese has no budget to maintain the center, a Korean missionary group based in Kkottongnae, South Korea will run the facility, according to the local church official.

The center is one of the four engagement areas of Pope Francis during his six-hour visit in Leyte province to provide solace to people who suffered the wrath of super typhoon Yolanda and Bohol earthquake. (PNA)

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