Following the deadly earthquakes on Monday, cities across Turkey and Syria are scenes of ruin. Where multi-story apartment buildings once stood lie heaps of broken concrete and twisted rebar. Rescuers spend frantic hours searching the wreckage for signs of life. Family members, neighbors, and friends watch nearby, waiting and hoping. Days with no word about their loved ones and little refuge from the cold leave them with dwindling hope.
There are a few moments of joy as workers rescue people who are still alive after spending days under the wreckage. But those moments are becoming more and more rare. Today the death toll from the earthquakes passes 25,000. Cemeteries in Turkey and Syria are quickly filling as mourning families bury their loved ones.
Contacts in the region are distributing food, blankets, hygiene items, and other aid to earthquake victims. They say that some of the greatest needs are food, water, blankets, and heating supplies like coal. “Electricity and gas are still cut off, so people need coal to [provide warmth] and cook,” said one contact. CAM staff members in the region are meeting with various contacts to continue monitoring needs and ways to provide aid.
One area that sustained damage from the earthquakes is Antioch, Turkey, a location where Paul and Barnabas preached.[/box] The challenges and questions in the wake of the Turkey and Syria earthquakes are many. Who and how do we help? Damaged infrastructure and roads leave some earthquake-affected areas difficult to access. Please continue to lift this crisis in prayer. Pray for the multitudes facing crushing sorrow and loss, as well as contacts and staff members seeking to respond. God bless you!
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