By ROME REPORTS     10/5/2016

Pope Francis paid a surprise visit to Amatrice, which was destroyed by an earthquake on Aug. 24.

He visited a school that has been relocated to a home because the school building was lost. He visited the red zone – the worst hit area – and thanked firefighters for their work.

He prayed in silence in front of the piles of rubble and then visited a nursing home where many of the residents were left homeless.

He wanted the town’s people to know they were not alone.

Editor’s note: You can help the people of Amatrice, Italy by attending the Oct. 14 earthquake fundraiser at Christ Cathedral or donating to the relief efforts. For more information: