Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Phillippines Catastrophe

The disaster in the Philippines is at the top of the news, and the devastation is incomprehensible. Please support the relief effort as you can, and most of all with your prayer and tears.

Our friend Al Mozol, whose thoughtful comments have added so much to this blog, has written that 10 million people are affected, including 4 million children, and a projected $14 billion economic fallout. He says:

"I experienced a supertyphoon when I was 10. But this supertyphoon has no comparison for the magnitude of destruction of lives and properties. We are not seeing the whole picture yet of the areas and people affected because the coverage of the typhoon was trans-regional. There are places that remain inaccessible by the media because of damaged roads, seaports and airports. Survivors, beyond assessment, are either dying of grief or hunger or thirst; the [last] desperate resort... is to leave the horror and stench of the place to anywhere their feet will bring them. Then there's looting for food. Relief services are in haste but the problem is how to deliver those. Then there's the chicken-egg problem as to what to fix first—communication or power.

The sites of the devastation are an hour and a half flight from Metro Manila. But with the recent earthquake and now the supertyphoon, things get more scary and precarious each day—what next? The climate is getting worse, obviously.

The Philippine lead negotiator to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change's 19th Conference of Parties (COP19) who hails from one of the provinces hit by the typhoon and whose brother had not eaten for 3 days, is on voluntary fasting until something positive will come out of this conference in Warsaw.

I led my three classes today in prayer and I was always on the brink of weeping. Lots of silence before faces of suffering and the duet of Celine Dion and Bocelli's The Prayer helps a lot. There's no other way but to weep even as we move our feet to extend any form of kindness and generosity."


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