Today marked sixty days since the earthquake and tsunami crashed into northeast Japan. A friend from the U.S. wrote today and said that there was an article on the front page of a major newspaper about relief efforts going on. Perhaps on “anniversary days” like this there is more press coverage. Here is a great article that has photos which capture some of the pain, work, tears of the past two months up in Tohoku.
Eric and I are gearing up for his fourth trip up. He will leave again next Wednesday for a week. He has been asked to help provide leadership for the amazing work being done through many different believers and church groups in the greater Osaka area, headed up by the Be One Network. (Website here). We have a friend Randy K. who is going to fly in from Hawaii next Tuesday night to go up with Eric and then stay an extra week up in Ishinomaki. We love this so much!
I shared recently with a friend that part of the reason I have been committed to blogging more than usual is because there has probably never been a time since the atomic bombs were dropped on two Japanese cities that more people around the world have prayed for Japan. Please don’t stop praying. There are still many, many people hurting, grieving, homeless, widowed.
One of the crazy results from the earthquake was that the whole country moved. One report says, “Imakiire says the quake was powerful enough to move the entire country, the first time this has been recorded since measurements began in the late 19th century. In Tokyo, 210 miles (340 kilometers) from Ishinomaki, parts of the city moved 9 inches (24 centimeters) seaward.” In Ishinomaki, the region where Eric has been working, there is still continual daily flooding in parts of the city because there was such a dramatic shift – sinking – of the earth there.
Tonight I talked with our friend Kazue from up in Sendai. They moved into a home today provided by the government, rent-free. She said it is a big old home – too big, it seems — with quite a few cracks and repairs needed, but her family is thankful to have a place to live for the near future. We are excited next week to give them the money gift that different friends have contributed to help them rebuild their lives. Even talking with her tonight I was moved by her humility and gratefulness, looking at the positive things that have happened.
Thanks for hanging with us, with Japan. Keep praying. And giving. We found out that so far 450,000 dollars has come in for Asian Access’ million dollars matching grant. Awesome! We know that this money is going directly to helping the people who need it.