Pray for flood victims in Brazil
Posted by bms_prayer at 09:43 on 14th January 2011
BBC News reports this morning that more than 500 people are now known to have died in floods in south eastern Brazil in the country's worst natural disaster for several decades. The death toll is likely to rise further in the days ahead.
Heavy rain has brought mudslides down on several towns in the mountainous Serrana region, north of Rio de Janeiro. Thousands have been made homeless.
The Independent reports today that ‘the landslides have taken the majority of victims from poorer communities, who tend to live in rickety homes without the proper foundations, built on the outskirts of urban areas’.
Mark Greenwood, a BMS worker based in Rio, has sent us this update:
“The area which has been hit is a popular weekend escape for folk from Rio de Janeiro city, just over an hour and a half’s drive from where we live.
“People from all social strata have been affected. It is a tourist destination in the mountains with various palaces and manors left over from imperial times, and is well known for its culinary delights. It is also where the Brazilian national football team have their training base. “
Along with many other denominations and organisations, the Brazilian Baptist Convention is organising relief for the families affected. One of the Baptist churches in Teresópolis is acting as a shelter, and many others as collection points for donations of food, clothing and toiletries.
“The National Mission Board is receiving financial donations. Today some donations were taken up to the cities, but the vehicles were turned back as the emergency services still consider the roads impassable. “
There have been severe floods this week in other regions of Brazil too, with loss of life, belongings and roads, particularly in São Paulo and Minas Gerais, but the worst hit has been the mountains of Rio de Janeiro.”
- For those grieving the loss of loved ones, and those left homeless
- That relief would reach those worst affected by flooding
- For those organising the relief effort to remain safe in their travels
- For Baptist churches in the area as they reach out to those in need
- That God would reveal himself to people even in the midst of this disaster