Orthodox Church at the side of quake-stricken in Albania
Rescue crews continued to work against the clock to locate possible survivors in the rubble of buildings that collapsed from a 6.4 on the Richter scale earthquake, which struck the coastal central region of the country on Tuesday.
According to local media, the death toll has risen to 40, while 47 people are officially missing, and 10 people are critically injured.
From the very first moment, the Autocephalous Orthodox Church of Albania and the Archbishop of Tirana and All Albania, His Beatitude Anastasios, have been at the side of those affected by the natural disaster.
Cathedrals have been opened to host people whose homes were destroyed and damaged, while all of the Church’s charity structures have been activated to provide any and all possible relief. Meals to hundreds of people are also being delivered by the Church on a daily basis.
In comments to the Athens-based broadcaster Skai on Wednesday, His Beatitude said this great calamity is being faced with a widespread mobilization of goodness, love and solidarity, as he noted.
The Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia, His Holiness Kirill, was the latest Orthodox Church Primate to extend his condolences to the Albanian people, in a letter addressed to Archbishop Anastasios.
In part, Kirill’s letter states “…Kindly accept my sincere condolences over the disaster that has befallen your country. Deeply empathising with all those who have been affected by this misfortune, especially those who have lost their relatives and friends in this tragedy, I am lifting up prayers to the Merciful Lord that He may send consolation to the bereaved, speedy recovery to the injured and fortitude to those who are working to overcome the consequences of the natural disaster.”