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Pope meets father of woman who died after Tacloban Mass

Victim had been a volunteer for the Catholic Relief Services

Joe Torres, Manila

Joe Torres, Manila

Published: January 18, 2015 12:30 PM GMT

Updated: April 22, 2015 01:27 AM GMT

Pope meets father of woman who died after Tacloban Mass

Pope Francis on Sunday met the father of a woman who died in an accident after the papal Mass for disaster victims in Tacloban the previous day.

Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, archbishop of Manila, gave journalists an account of the meeting, which was held at the Apostolic Nunciature in Manila at midday.

"What struck the Holy Father was the statement of the father (of the victim)," Tagle said.

The cardinal quoted Paulino Padasas, the father of the victim, as saying, "I only have one daughter. Why did God take her?"

Kristel Mae Padasas, 27, was killed when strong winds blew over a scaffolding structure that was supporting a speaker stack, which struck her on the head. The accident took place while she was waiting for the papal convoy after the Mass on Saturday in Tacloban.

"I have resigned myself to the fact that my daughter is no longer with me, I rejoice that she died serving other people," Tagle quoted Mr Padasas as saying.

The young woman had been a volunteer for the Catholic Relief Services, a humanitarian aid agency of the US Catholic Church.

"My daughter died, she arranged this meeting with the Holy Father," Tagle added, quoting the father of the victim.

Tagle said Pope Francis only shook his head and said, "What faith!"

"I think the Holy Father was surprised in [a] pleasant way," Tagle told the media.

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During a meeting with youth on Sunday, Pope Francis opened his address by urging the audience to pray for Padasas.

"She was 27 years old, young like yourselves," the pope told the gathering.

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