More than 225 people have been killed and many more injured following a 7.1 magnitude earthquake that struck Mexico yesterday (Tuesday). It comes as the wider region is battered by Hurricane Maria – the fourth hurricane to hit the Caribbean region in recent weeks. The Anglican Alliance says that information coming out of both disasters is sketchy, but has urged Christians to pray for the ongoing relief operations.
Amongst the dead in Mexico are at least 21 children and five adults who died when their primary school collapsed in Mexico City. The epicentre was 75 miles south-east of Mexico City in the town of Atencingo. The US Geological Survey said that the quake, which hit at 1.14 pm Central Time (6.14 pm GMT) had a depth of around 32 miles.
Meanwhile, in the Caribbean, seven people have been reported dead on Dominica and two people have been killed in Guadeloupe as Hurricane Maria rips through the region. Reports say that Dominica has been devastated by the 155 MPH winds, which have also caused widespread damage on St Croix, and left most of Puerto Rico without power.
“There is very little news coming out of Dominica, but what is emerging tells of widespread destruction,” Clifton Nedd, the Anglican Alliance Caribbean Facilitator said. “At the moment Ham radio appears to be the main way of communicating as cell phone and internet connections are down.”
As the disasters unfold, the Anglican Alliance is working hard to gather information from church leaders in Mexico and the affected islands.
“We are closely monitoring the unfolding situation with Hurricane Maria and the earthquake in Mexico,” the Revd Rachel Carnegie, co-executive director of the Anglican Alliance, told ACNS. “As soon as the situation becomes clear and the churches have been able to assess the situation, the Alliance will provide further information on the planned response.
“For now, please hold all the affected communities and churches in your prayers as they face tragic loss of life and terrible destruction.”