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Committee instituted for the distribution of funds collected for Ukraine, 09.06.2016

Vatican City, 9 June 2016 – The Holy See Press Office has announced the institution of a committee responsible for the distribution of the funds gathered in the collection promoted by the Pope for Ukraine.

"As is known, following the tragic hostilities in the east of Ukraine, the Holy Father Francis has promoted humanitarian action, entitled "The Pope for Ukraine", in support of the affected populations resident there and those who have fled to other parts of the country.

To support this action, the Pope offered a personal contribution and called for a collection which took place on Sunday 24 April in all Catholic churches throughout Europe. The proceeds are destined exclusively for the benefit of the population afflicted by war, without distinction on the basis of religion, confession or ethnic origin."

To oversee the distribution of these funds, the Pope has decided to constitute a special in loco 'technical' committee, made up of a president and four members, according to a letter sent by Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin to Bishop Jan Sobilo, auxiliary of Kharkiv-Zaporizhia, at the same time appointed as president of the Committee.

The other members will be appointed by the president, aside from one, who will be indicated in agreement with 'Caritas Internationalis' and the Pontifical Council 'Cor Unum'. The Committee will have a one year mandate, renewable if necessary, and will be based in the Curia of the diocese of Kharkiv-Zaporizhia. The workers who act on behalf of the Committee – either at its central office or in the field – will be volunteers, so that the funds gathered may be used effectively to help the affected populations.

The letter makes important indications regarding the choice of interventions to be carried out: the proposals must be received firstly 'from interreligious or interconfessional assemblies existing in the single areas, or from individual Bishops, also non-Catholic, where such assemblies do not exist', but proposals from other organisations may also be examined.

As this is a personal initiative of the Pope, the final authorities for the project are the Secretariat of State and the Pontifical Council 'Cor Unum', via the apostolic nunciature in Ukraine; technical supervision of its implementation will be entrusted to the Pontifical Council.