Catholic bishops in Pakistan appealed for international solidarity in the wake of floods brought about by monsoon rains in the past days.
“Considering the extent of the flood emergency, it is urgent to show solidarity with the flood victims and people in need,” said Archbishop Benny Travas of Karachi, capital of the province of Sindh.
Fides News Agency quoted the prelate appealing for “urgent humanitarian support” for affected families.
The archbishop said people need tents, shelter kits, food, hygiene and sanitary materials, non-perishable food products, and clothes.
Archbishop Travas, who is national director of Caritas Pakistan, said the organization is receiving requests from parishes, communities, disaster management committees, and district governments.
“The diocesan staff of Caritas in Karachi has already started the monitoring and help work, and I urgently appeal for support and invite people of good will to donate cash or material aid,” he said.
Bishop Samson Shukardin of Hyderabad reported that he has been receiving phone calls for help from priests and the people in various parishes in his diocese.
The bishop said 90 percent of his diocese has been flooded due to heavy rain. “Many churches, parish houses and schools have been damaged by the deluge,” he said.
“The people are left homeless and hungry beside families grieving for the loss of their loved ones,” said Bishop Shukardin.
“I am also concerned about the poor farming families who have lost their crops and along with all this damage they will be burdened by more loans, as they are already indebted to their landlords,” he said.
On Sunday, Pope Francis expressed his solidarity with the people affected by the disaster.
“I want to assure the people of Pakistan, hit by floods of disastrous proportions, of my closeness,” said the pope during Angelus on Sunday.
“I pray for the numerous victims, for the wounded and those forced from their homes, and that international solidarity might be prompt and generous,” the pope said.