Beira, Mozambique. The nightmare continues for the people of Beira as well as for thousands of people inland that were impacted by Cyclone Idai. About 90% of the city has been destroyed. Churches have simply crumbled and home completely destroyed.
It has been described as one of if not the worst natural disasters to ever hit the Southern Hemisphere. The death toll continues to climb and many are still missing and unaccounted for. A huge inland ocean has been created by the deluge and covers vast areas where people normally live and farm. Villages have been submerged or simply washed away. In some cases people were swept of hills in Zimbabwe and washed away as far as Mozambique.
Communications have been sporadic at best, but reports coming out of the area tell a chilling tale. People were stuck in trees or on rooftops for days before they were rescued, there is no food in rural areas which have been surveyed by air. Roads are impassable and there is no fresh water.
A government official spoke to Thinus Botha of Harvesters Ministries and said that food is arriving in Beira as International Aid Agencies respond to the crisis. People need money to buy food. ‘’Our biggest challenge will be in the days to come as we expect a huge outbreak of Cholera which could last weeks or months”, he said. Medical supplies are in critically low.
Harvesters Ministries, who have planted thousands of churches in the three countries affected is gearing up for the long haul. “Once the media focus has gone the suffering will continue”, said CEO Steven Loots. ‘’We have hundreds of pastors and student pastors in the region who will need help to rebuild the churches and their homes.” Amazingly, one of the urgent heart cries has been: “We have lost our Bibles – please help”. Harvesters is working alongside other mission agencies to raise need funds to help churches recover.
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