Update from Christchurch Following Earthquake

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Tearing Down Walls.
Building Up Hope.

Update on Christchurch, New Zealand

Rev. Elder Diane FisherDear Friends,

I spoke with Neil last night. He has been working at the local hospital. Planes are arriving from around the world with supplies and search & rescue teams. Many patients have been air-lifted to Australia.

I asked Neil what we could do, and he suggested donations can be made to the New Zealand Red Cross. He will let us know what else is needed once damage is assessed.

I have included a letter from Neil with more details. We are all overwhelmed by the destruction in this beautiful city. Please join me and the Senior Leadership Team of MCC in prayer for CRAVE MCC and for the people of Christchurch.

DF Sig

Rev. Elder Diane Fisher

MCC Office of Outreach

Marion Wilson, Neil Hellewell from Crave MCC Christchurch

Kia Ora everyone

I have been given the next two days off from work at the hospital so beginning the clean up at home.  The center of Christchurch has been badly affected with many of our historic buildings damaged beyond repair.  All the church buildings in the immediate area – including the Christchurch Cathedrals (Anglican and Catholic) have sustained severe damage.

Power is being restored, but water and sanitation is going to be a major issue over the next few months.  I finally got power last night which was so overwhelming I just kept bursting into tears (in a manly nursing kinda way of course).

Between Marion and I we have contacted all of the MCC’ers and altho’ yet to hear from three, all who we have had contact with are okay.  Due to the restrictions on travel around the city and being unable to identify any damage at the Nancy Ave worship center, we will not be having a service on Sunday, but those near Marion Wilson’s home are welcome to gather there.  More information will be circulated on the CRAVE MCC Facebook site.

My house is weather tight altho’ cracking on the outside, and my deck is pretty warped.  The drive was coated in the liquefaction silt and still no water or sewerage at this point.  I live inside the inner city cordon so I am allowed into my home (with ID and proof of address) but no one is able to visit due to the instability of the buildings on the surrounding streets.  I am two blocks from the devastated CTV  and Pyne Gould Guinness buildings and the extent of damage in the CBD is heart rending.  My boyfriend Tony is a civil defence volunteer who has been working long hours at the Civil Defence headquarters in Latimer Square, and has seen much of the extensive damage close up.  Marion has water, power and phone and an enterprising neighbor has dug a toilet in the small park over her back fence – which has been a great “relief”. Both she and her Mother are both fine.

Currently the confirmed death toll is 103 with over 200 still unaccounted for. One of my work colleagues was killed while driving to work and I am sure that everyone in Christchurch will know someone who has been killed.  We are a small city and as such are close knit, which is being shown in the amazing way people are supporting each other again.

Thank you to everyone for your prayers, and we ask that the prayers continue for all of us here in Christchurch, especially for the search for survivors.  We continue to hope for miracles.

Ka Kite

Neil

Worship Leader (1 of 2) CRAVE MCC Christchurch