Pope Francis at his weekly Angelus and Sunday Gospel reflection delivered at St. Peter's Square offered prayers for those who were affected by Typhoon Odette, saying:
"I would like to share my nearness to the people of the Philippines. As you know at least 75 are feared dead after devastating storm struck the Philippines on Thursday due to Typohoon Rai and the best help we can give is that of prayer."
He also tweeted sympathies for typhoon victims, offering a prayer to the Sto. Niño: "May the Sto. Niño bring consolation and hope to the families of those affected."
Typhoon Rai, locally known as Odette, was the strongest typhoon to hit the Philippines this year. As of Sunday, December 19, at least 75 people were reported killed, with more than 300,000 people reported to have fled their homes and beachfront resorts.
Many areas lost communications and electricity while roofs of cathedrals were blown away and concrete power poles knocked down.
The Negros Oriental Provincial Police Office recorded 41 dead, 57 injured, and 33 missing across the province as of December 19 while at least 15 people were reported dead in the Philippines’ surfing capital of Siargao Island.
Video: Vatican News
Photo: Pope Francis @Pontifex Twitter