A tragic accident near Cordoba, Argentina, has claimed the lives of three of Pope Francis’ family members on Tuesday, CNN reports.
A car driven by the pontiff’s nephew Emanuel Horacio Bergoglio crashed into the back of a truck that was carrying grain shortly after midnight, a Cordoba police spokesperson revealed to multiple outlets.
The pontiff’s nephew, the son of his brother Alberto Bergoglio, survived the crash and has been hospitalized, but remains in serious condition. Emanuel’s wife Valeria Carmona and their two children, 8 months old and 2 years old, were all killed.
The Daily Mail reports that after the incident, Vatican spokesperson Reverend Federico Lombardi confirmed that “the pope was informed about the tragic accident. He is deeply pained.”
The pope himself made a recent visit to South Korea — the first papal visit to the country in 25 years — and lightheartedly spoke to reporters on a flight back to the Vatican about his own mortality. The pope expressed that he expected to be in “the Father’s house” in two or three years.
When asked about his global popularity, the pontiff replied, “I see it as the generosity of the people of God. I try to think of my sins, my mistakes, not to become proud. Because I know it will last only a short time. Two or three years and then I’ll be off to the Father’s house,” The Guardian reports.
Our thoughts go out to Pope Francis, his nephew Emanuel, and the rest of their family during this sad time.