Here in Cork, we have a very dedicated and inspirational Christian Aid worker, Andrew Coleman. Last year he spent some time in Haiti so as soon as his email arrived yesterday morning I read it through. Here is an excerpt:
You will have seen that there was a severe earthquake in Haiti last night.I think that there will be a huge response to this in terms of church collections and aid from many other quarters. It is beyond heartbreaking to think of tens of thousands of people dead or missing, buried beneath the rubble.
At approximately 16:53 an earthquake hit Haiti. It was measured at 7.3 on the Richter scale. It struck about 15km south-west of the capital and was shortly followed by two strong aftershocks of 5.9 and 5.5. There was huge destruction of buildings and a loss of life to many people in Port au Prince the capital. At this moment Christian Aid are launching Appeal in Ireland to support the victims in Haiti. There will be a high level of structural damage, loss of life and damage to water systems, electricity supply and road access. This earthquake has struck an already vulnerable population. In the poorer areas people are very much stretched to the limit.
Christian Aid has a long presence in Haiti and at present is struggling with this destructive earthquake that has just hit the country. The Christian Aid office has been destroyed but all staff has now been recovered. We have many Haitian partner organisations operating over many years in Haiti. Partners have successfully been involved in distributions in previous emergencies...
A prayer for Haiti (From Christian Aid Website)
Loving God of creation,
at this time of devastation
we hold before you the people of Haiti.
When the damage is unimaginable,
and the suffering seems overwhelming,
remind us that every person affected
is loved, honoured and precious in your sight.
We remember all those who have been hurt;
all who have lost their homes, livelihoods and loved ones.
Work through us to bring healing
to broken and distorted lives,
peace to those who have been thrown into despair,
light to those in darkness,
and hope to those who fear.
We ask this in the name of Jesus
in whom all life and grace is found.