Why Did God Allow This Disaster? Talk about it.
On January 12, 2010 a devastating earthquake hit Haiti just a few miles south of the capitol. The US Geological Survey reports that the initial quake registered 7.0 on the Richter scale, with aftershocks registering as high as 5.9. The Richter scale considers 7.0 a major quake and notes that at 5.9 even the aftershock “can cause major damage to poorly constructed buildings over small regions”
In a report for CNN, anchor Anderson Cooper reported that in Haiti it’s rare for buildings to use reinforced concrete. When a quake hits, buildings just crumble. Port-au-Prince and the surrounding areas are incredibly densely populated, putting hundreds of thousands of people at risk in the wake the disaster.
“Because of the earthquake’s proximity to the capital, and because the city is densely populated and has poorly constructed housing, ‘it could cause significant casualties,’ said Jian Lin, a senior geologist at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts.”(CNN.com)
Reports are pouring in of people running screaming from a collapsed hospital. There are photographs of incredible damage to the presidential palace – a beautiful building just days ago. Ethan Park arrived in Haiti a couple of hours before the quake and was on the road outside the capitol when it hit. He wrote, “we were in our vehicle on the way out of Port aux Prince when it struck…the road lifted and people were flying [through] the air.”
Haiti is one of the poorest nations in the western hemisphere. Most of Haiti’s nine million citizens survive on only $2 a day. Year after year terrible hurricanes slam into the island displacing hundreds of thousands of people. Haiti has a hard enough time surviving on a good day. A quake like this can be catastrophic.
You can help
Global Aid Network (GAiN) is an aid provider who has worked in Haiti before. They are preparing Emergency Response packages with water purification tablets, food and personal hygiene supplies. All it takes is $115 to feed a family of six for a week – that’s less than $1 per meal. You can donate now and know that your aid will arrive in Haiti as quickly as possible. Since it began in 1998, GAiN Canada has mobilized resources to help people in over 35 countries around the world. GAiN is a registered NGO.
Where is God in all this?
When disaster strikes, it’s common to wonder “does God care?” The pain and agony of fellow human beings in the midst of disaster goes beyond our comprehension. Our minds scramble to make sense of human suffering and we simply cannot. We can agonize over the possibilities as we seek to answer the heart wrenching, “Why?” Yet we cannot understand God nor can we always determine the answer to the difficult “why?” even though we try desperately. Is God on our side?
Tell us what you think
We want to hear your thoughts as you watch the aftermath of this disaster unfold.
*Photo courtesy of US Department of State. http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/pix/index.htm