The 9.0 earthquake, which struck Japan at 2:46 p.m. on
March 11, was the fifth largest earthquake ever recorded and
the biggest in Japan’s history. Minutes after the earthquake,
a 23-foot wall of water from a quake-triggered tsunami
slammed Japan’s eastern coast. To compound problems,
the cooling systems at six of Japan’s nuclear reactors were
knocked out causing a serious nuclear emergency, second
only to that of Chernobyl twenty-five years ago.
Thousands of bodies have washed ashore. At this writing,
25,104 people have died or are unaccounted for. Millions
struggled for days with inadequate food, heat, and water,
while temperatures hovered near freezing with biting
winds and snow flurries. Hundreds of thousands stayed in
|Devastation in Japan
“We are struggling desperately to recover,” said Yoshihiro,
governor of the worst affected region of Miyagi. “I am afraid
it’s going to take a few years to revive. The disaster was far
bigger than we prepared for.”
CAM dispatched several team members to Japan who
are coordinating our relief efforts. As with all our Crisis
Response projects, we are giving priority to sharing the
Gospel of Jesus Christ through Christian literature.
Japan has a population of 127 million, with less than
two percent calling themselves Christian. Most Japanese
follow Shintoism or Buddhism. The regions hardest hit by
the earthquake and subsequent tsunami are considered
the “darkest” spiritually by most missionaries. A contact
in Japan shared there are about 4.9 million people in these
regions, with a mere 9,000 active Christians. How sad that
in this great national calamity when many have lost loved
ones and all their earthly possessions, most Japanese do
not have God to cling to!
A visitor to the town of Kesennuma wrote:
The tsunami swept up homes and cars and then churned them into pieces
like a giant sheet of sandpaper scrubbing everything in its
wake. The town’s hospital still stands, its doors and windows
blown out by the water. A small boat is perched on what was
once a third-story balcony.
The humanitarian needs in the quake/tsunami area are
serious, but the psychological effect is nationwide. The
disaster has left the normally self-reliant Japanese feeling
very vulnerable. Please pray that through this tragedy many
would open their hearts to the Word of God and prepare
themselves for eternity! Pray also for our team members
in Japan and CAM staff as they decide how best to help.
Your contributions will go for humanitarian aid and
Christian literature for Japan. If the Lord leads you to help,
your gift of love will be greatly appreciated.
“Be merciful unto me, O God . . . in the shadow of thy
wings will I make my refuge, until these calamities be
overpast.” Psalm 57:1
God bless you!
Christian Aid Ministries of Waterloo
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