"You have to work hard to offend Christians. By nature, Christians are the most forgiving, understanding, and thoughtful group of people I've ever dealt with. They never assume the worst. They appreciate the importance of having different perspectives. They're slow to anger, quick to forgive, and almost never make rash judgments or act in anything less than a spirit of total love . . . No, wait--I'm thinking of Labrador retrievers!" David Learn, 1998

Friday, March 25, 2011

HEROES: Justianos calling in Marines for relief to Minami Sanriku

Justiniano  -  Excellent Relief Aid Opportunity!  -  March 25, 2011                       Email not displaying correctly? View it in your browser.

Dear Friends,

The Lord has answered your prayer, and excellent opportunities for relief have been opened!  We praise the Lord and thank you for joining us in ministry in this way.

This morning our 3-man team set out early for one of the hardest hit tsunami disaster areas, the north coastal town of Minami Sanriku.  This is a town about 55 miles away from the bigger city of Sendai which has received most of the media attention.  The devastation was unbelievable and almost surreal.  The whole 17,000 person town was literally demolished by the tsunami.  The one bit of consolation we could glean is that 9,000 of those were able to escape in time and are now surviving at evacuation centers around the area.  The challenge at hand is keeping up supplies of food, water, and other daily necessities for that sheer a volume of survivors.  We were able to connect with the Supply Supervisor for the evacuation centers in that area, Mr. Ujie, and discern their needs.  We have some rice to offer to them as well as hygiene kits for all the evacuees, and possibly large supplies of water.  I'd like to ask for your prayer for the challenges we have of getting the supplies to them.  Here is what we would appreciate prayer for:

1)  We have asked the U.S. Marines to help us by picking up a load by helicopter and delivering it to the evac site headquarters.  Praise the Lord there is a soccer field where they can land.  The Marine Captain I spoke to expressed a desire to help us; praise the Lord.  We are now awaiting confirmation in the morning.
Please pray the helicopter drop will take place and those in need can get their hygiene kits and water expediently.  Without the helicopter drop, it will be very laborious and time consuming to try to bring it all in by van or truck.

2)  The supplies of rice and hygiene kits that don't fit in the helicopter will need to be delivered by van or truck along roads that were damaged by the earthquake.  I will likely be trying to deliver some with our minivan, but if there are others who can help with larger trucks, the evacuees will be able to get their needed supplies much more quickly.  Please pray for safe and expedient delivery of the supplies.

3)  We will be trying to connect local pastors and Christians with those we are helping.  Please pray that a local pastor or other Christians can be connected with Mr. Ujie and others we wotk with, and that through those relationships they will come to know Christ.

4)  We are still trying to establish new base camps for future ministry but nothing ideal has panned out yet.  Please pray that the Lord will lead us to a good facility for the next base camp.

5)  With so much going on, we are tired and short of sleep.  Please pray our health will be protected and we can get needed sleep to be able to serve well. 

Your prayer is invaluable.
Peace and grace,
Ralph, for the Justinianos

More about situation in Sanriku, on Cecilia's blog, Japan.

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