Christians in Chile Need Help to Recover from Massive Earthquake

March 2, 2010

Some 2 million people in Chile were affected in one way or another by the fifth most powerful earthquake in the last 100 years. The strong tremors began early Saturday morning with an 8.8 magnitude quake followed by more than 90 aftershocks. As of Monday, March 1 over 700 people were reported dead, with more than 540 deaths in the Maule region, along the southern coast. It was reported that over 500,000 homes sustained considerable damage.

Christian Aid has been in contact with an indigenous ministry, the Chile Evangelical Mission, about the situation. The leader, Jose Sanchez Troncoso, reported "The congregations that we have in the towns of Chillan and Tome (close to epicenter) have been seriously affected by the earthquake. Their small meeting halls have been destroyed and most of the homes of believers collapsed. Our meeting hall in Santiago has severe damage to the infrastructure and needs to be torn down because it is not safe to be used."