Pontiff Urges Solidarity With Tuberculosis Victims

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VATICAN CITY, MARCH 21, 2007 (Zenit.org).- Benedict XVI made an appeal for solidarity with the victims of tuberculosis. The international day dedicated to victims of this disease is scheduled for Saturday.



The Pope's appeal today was a precursor to World Tuberculosis Day, sponsored by the U.N. World Health Organization each March 24.

At the end of today's general audience in St. Peter's Square, the Holy Father said: "May this event favor a growing responsibility in treating this illness and an evermore intense solidarity with those who suffer it."

The Pontiff invoked upon those suffering from tuberculosis and their families "the comfort of the Lord," and he encouraged "the many initiatives of aid that the Church promotes in this area."

According to the statistics published by the World Health Organization in March, approximately one-third of the world's population is infected with tuberculosis germs. The 2007 global report will be published Thursday.