LCMS World Relief/Human Care is accepting donations toward emergency relief for the millions affected by the Oct. 8 earthquake that killed an estimated 80,000 people in South Asia — mostly in Pakistan, and for survivors of flooding and landslides in Mexico and Central America, where as many as 3,000 died after Hurricane Stan dumped a reported 20 inches of rain when it hit there Oct. 4.
Almost 3.3 million people were believed to be displaced and in need of emergency help as a result of the South Asia earthquake, which measured 7.6 on the Richter scale.
Based on the human toll, news agencies are calling this one of the deadliest quakes in modern times.
Aftershocks continued to shake remote mountainous areas of northern Pakistan more than a week after the massive quake left entire remote villages in ruins.
When this Reporter went to the printer, LCMS World Relief/Human Care was working through its inter-Lutheran partner, Lutheran World Relief (LWR), Baltimore, to respond to the needs of earthquake survivors.
Through Action by Churches Together, LWR initially provided emergency food packages to at least 1,600 families in the hard-hit areas of Azad Kashmir and Pakistan’s North-West Frontier Province.
Hurricane Stan, the 18th named storm of the season, struck the coasts of Mexico, El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala. Hardest hit was Guatemala, where a mudslide literally buried the village of Panabaj. Many survivors lost their homes and belongings, and there are fears that the storm’s impact on the coffee harvest may have far-reaching effects on the local economy.
Leaders of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Guatemala (ELCG), a partner church with the LCMS, say that most of that church’s congregations are in areas where Stan did not inflict damage. However, they were assessing needs and expected to request relief assistance when they determine their role in relief efforts there.
LCMS World Relief and LWR also are working to provide relief to hard-hit communities in El Salvador.
To donate for emergency food, water, and shelter for earthquake survivors, send checks or money orders designated “Pakistan Earthquake” and made payable to “LCMS World Relief” to LCMS World Relief/Human Care, P.O. Box 66861, St. Louis, MO 63166-9810. Or, call the credit-card gift line at (888) 930-4438. Or, visit http://worldrelief.lcms.org, click on “October 8 earthquake in Pakistan,” and then on the “Give Now” button.
Use the same LCMS World Relief/Human Care address or credit card gift line number for donating toward assistance for flood and mudslide survivors in Central America. Earmark checks “Guatemala flood relief.” Or go to the Web site, click on “Oct. 4 Hurricane Stan causes deadly flooding and mudslides,” and finally on “Give Now.”
Posted Oct. 27, 2005