Pope Benedict XVI made two statements about the recent disaster in Japan through Vatican Information Services.
VATICAN CITY, 13 MAR 2011 (VIS) – After praying the Angelus today, the Pope spoke of the “images of the tragic earthquake and the consequent tsunami in Japan” which, he said, “have left a deep impression on us all.
“I wish to renew”, he added, “my spiritual closeness to the dear people of that country who are facing up to the consequences of these calamities with dignity and courage. I pray for the victims and their families, and for everyone suffering as a result of these tremendous events. And I encourage everyone who, with commendable willingness, is bringing aid. Let us remain united in prayer, the Lord is near us!”
Telegram from The Pope:
VATICAN CITY, 12 MAR 2011 (VIS) – The Holy Father, through Cardinal Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone S.D.B., has sent a telegram of condolence to Archbishop Leo Jun Ikenaga S.J. of Osaka, Japan, president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Japan, for the earthquake and tsunami which have brought devastation to the country.
“Deeply saddened by the sudden and tragic effects of the major earthquake and consequent tsunamis which have struck Japan’s north-eastern coastal regions, His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI assures all who have been afflicted of his closeness at this difficult time. He prays for those who have died, and upon their grieving families and friends he invokes divine blessings of strength and consolation. The Holy Father also expresses his prayerful solidarity with all those providing rescue, relief and support to the victims of this disaster”.
Today’s Gospel: Matthew 25: 31-46
Jesus said to his disciples:
When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit upon his glorious throne,
and all the nations will be assembled before him. And he will separate them one from another, as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats.
He will place the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.
Then the king will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father. Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.
For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me.’
Then the righteous will answer him and say, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink?
When did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you?
When did we see you ill or in prison, and visit you?’
And the king will say to them in reply, ‘Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me.’
Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you accursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.
For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink,
a stranger and you gave me no welcome, naked and you gave me no clothing, ill and in prison, and you did not care for me.’
Then they will answer and say, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or ill or in prison, and not minister to your needs?’
He will answer them, ‘Amen, I say to you, what you did not do for one of these least ones, you did not do for me.’
And these will go off to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.
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