Earthquake in Taiwan

earthquake                        Magnitude-6.4 Earthquake Struck Southern Taiwan

By Sr. Catharina Tien

Feb. 6, at 3:57 am, just one day before the traditional Chinese New Year Eve, a magnitude-6.4 earthquake shocked the whole island, which toppled many buildings, injured 500 more people, and caused a great deal of fatalities in Tainan, the oldest city in Taiwan. The death toll of the earthquake was 117 people. Of the fatalities, 115 people died in the 16-storey Weiguan Jinlong apartment building in the city of Tainan. Because of this earthquake, the Lunar New Year left with heavy hearted and sincere prayers.

While rescue and search teams from around the island were untiringly scrambling to the toppled building to find more survivors who were still trapped in the rubble of the Weiguan high-rise tower, restaurants and hotels were opening their doors and offering food or shelter to victims or their families. Local churches and some philanthropic organizations also immediately mobilized as many as resources -volunteers, aid materials, food, snacks, hot beverages , face masks, gloves, hand warmers, clothing and blankets food, etc. to be sent to the Church relief station near the collapsed building. From Feb. 7 to Feb. 9, SMICs of Tainan community took turns staying overnight with lay people at the relief station. Following sharing are from our Vietnamese sisters:

  1. In my life, I have never known anything about the earthquake until I   When arriving at the spot, I could hardly express the mixed feelings in my mind. But little service at the resting place made me feel happy. This unexpected earthquake shows me how vulnerable our life is! At the spot, I saw people how to face this event through their desire, efforts and love. I am grateful for such an opportunity to serve people at the spot…                          (by Sr. M. Hannah Ngo)
  2. 3. On hearing such a sad news, I made a pray, hoping everyone was safe.
  3. 2. Our service was mainly to care for any needs from the victim families and the rescuers. Sometimes I felt what I could do was quite little… At the resting place, there were many other volunteers from different institutions. I was moved when I saw a store owner bring food and say to the rescures, “Many thanks for your efforts. You are heroes in our country!” Indeed, those “heroes” committed to their work at the expenses of their lives, and even of the time being with their families and friends. What they have done for the victimized families realizes what Jesus said in the Bible “ 『Greater love than this no man hath, that a man lay down his life for his friends.』 (Jn 15:13)                                (by Sr. Monica Le)
  4. came to Taiwan. On Feb. 6, I arrived at the seriously damaged area and hoped I could do some things for the victimized families and the rescue teams. I was quite touched to see a lot of men and women, college students, and volunteers with different religions staying at the spot to take care of anyone who asked for help. Their commitment shows that they not only brought visible necessities to the needy, but also touched their hearts through caring and thoughtfulnees. This sad event is a good opportunity for me to deeply empathize others’ pains, and learn how to care for other’s needs with love.       (by Sr. Joyce Ha)

This tragic event has come to an end, recovery operations will be lasting for a period of time for the victimized. All sisters in Taiwan appreciate those letters and supportive prayers from the SMICs’ provinces around the world, especially a caring phone call from Sr. Livramento as soon as she watched the breaking news in USA.

Let’s keep all victim families, who either lost their beloved or were wounded, in our prayers. May our merciful God be journeying them with love and strength!