Southern Mexico hit by massive earthquake


Arriaga Church of the Nazarene, Mexico South Pacific District

A massive 8.1-magnitude earthquake struck off of the southern coast of Mexico near the states of Chiapas and Oaxaca around midnight 7 September.

The quake killed at least 96 people — including one member from Paredon Church of the Nazarene — and thousands of homes were damaged or destroyed across 41 municipalities. More than 25 Nazarene churches and at least nine parsonages were damaged in the quake.

Churches whose buildings are still standing are serving as shelters for neighbors who lost their homes. Twelve churches are working together to provide food, water, and medical care. They are providing meals to 8,000 individuals each day.

Most hospitals are damaged, and churches have received permission from the government to receive medical supplies to get them to the affected areas. The Nazarene Boarder Initiative has organized teams of doctors, nurses, and pharmacists from Mexico and Central America to visit multiple sites a day. 

"We are seeing a lot of respiratory infections and asthma," said Rhesa Rodriguez, a missionary with the Nazarene Boarder Initiative. "High blood pressure and diabetes are also at a high due to loss of medications in house collapse as well as no electricity for storing [medicine]. What I love about being here is seeing volunteers from all over Mexico pulling together to meet the needs here both physically and spiritually. God provided today just as we need it with doctors and pharmacists showing up with more bag of [medicine]."

Buildings continue to fall, and many people are fearful of returning to fragile buildings harmed by the initial quake.

"Anxiety is at a high as aftershocks rock the city throughout the day," Rodriguez said.

Chiapas and Oaxaca are two of the poorest states in Mexico, with more than two-thirds of people living in poverty and millions living in extreme poverty. Those affected by the earthquake were already among the most vulnerable, and disasters push those living in poverty even close to extreme poverty.

Church leaders are requesting prayer for those affected and support as they work to meet the needs in their communities.


Bridge Church of the Nazarene, Mexico Oaxaca District

How to help

Pray

Please pray for families and individuals affected by the earthquake. Pray especially for those who have lost loved ones. Pray for those who have lost their homes and livelihoods. Pray those are experiencing trauma, that they would sense God’s peace and presence. Pray for those who are most vulnerable, especially senior adults, individuals with disabilities, and people living in poverty. Pray for church leaders and churches responding to the needs around them. To send a prayer or note of encouragement, go to ncm.org/pray.

Go

Medical volunteers and Work & Witness teams are needed. To complete a volunteer information form, click here.

Give

Churches and individuals around the world can provide support through the Mexico Earthquake Response fund. Donations will be used to provide for immediate needs, including food, water, and medical supplies, as well as for long-term rebuilding.

To send donations by mail:

In the U.S., make checks payable to "General Treasurer" and send them to: 

Global Treasury Services
Church of the Nazarene
P.O. Box 843116
Kansas City, MO 64184-3116

Be sure to put 128252 in the Memo area.

In Canada, make checks payable to "Church of the Nazarene Canada" and send them to:

Church of the Nazarene Canada
20 Regan Road, Unit 9
Brampton, Ontario L7A 1C3

Be sure to put 128252 in the Memo area.

For additional countries, please give through your local church or district, designating your gift to Mexico Earthquake Response

--Nazarene Compassionate Ministries

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