Loading
Chinese Catholics begin recovery from devastating earthquake
Chinese Catholics begin recovery from devastating earthquake

.- After a massive 7.9 magnitude earthquake on Monday, priests in the devastated southwestern province of Sichuan are trying to help survivors and assess the extent of damage and loss of life in their communities. Bishops and priests are asking for relief aid and prayers, while Catholic organizations are soliciting donations to help quake victims.

China’s Ministry of Civil Affairs said at a press conference in Beijing on Tuesday afternoon that the quake has killed 11,921 people and destroyed 500,000 buildings in Sichuan and its neighboring provinces.

Local priests told UCA News that information is still incomplete, in part because telephone systems were disrupted and roads damaged.  They confirmed at least one church collapsed and dozens of others were partially damaged by the earthquake, which measured 7.9 on the Richter scale.

Father Simon Li Zhigang, administrator of the Diocese of Chengdu, told UCA News that he could not reach by phone the priests in Wenchuan, where there are about 100 Catholics, or Beichuan, where there are several hundred.

The priest said that a layman who worked at a church in Mianzhu was killed by falling rocks and debris, while two other laypeople were seriously injured.  Two churches in the diocese had partially collapsed, while one was completely flattened.  Another thirty have been damaged.

In the Diocese of Nanchon, about 150 miles from the epicenter of the earthquake, Sister Wang Yan told UCA News that the activities room added to their church building shook for seven minutes, casting almost everything to the floor. 

“I thought it was the end of the world,” she said.

Dozens of laypeople were staying in the wood-built Nanchong city church because they feared sleeping in their damaged brick houses, she said.

Father Xie Bangyong in the Diocese of Chongquing said that priests had divided into groups to see if area Catholics were safe and to assess damage to old churches.  All priests, nuns, and laypeople were safe, he said, though a non-Catholic church maintenance worker’s leg was broken during the quake.  Fissures had also appeared in some old churches.

Auxiliary Bishop Paul He Zeqing of Wanzhou said that a residence for priests and another for nuns in Liangping had become unsafe.  “Other churches, all newly built, are not affected,” he said.

Bishop He led Catholics in prayer for the quake victims at the Tuesday morning Mass.  He also urged them to donate to relief efforts.

In eastern China, the Diocese of Shanghai has donated 1 million yuan, about $143,000, for earthquake relief.  Bishop of Shanghai Aloysius Jin Luxian directed all parish priests to pray for victims and survivors during special Eucharistic Adoration sessions scheduled for Sunday.  He also told parish priests to donate Mass collections for that day to relief efforts.

Underground Bishop Joseph Wei Jingyi, from Qiqihar in the northeastern Heilongjiang province, wrote and circulated a prayer he wrote asking God to look after those spiritually and physically wounded by the disaster.

In southern China, the Tianrun Service in the Diocese of Jiangmen urged Catholics through its website to donate medical aid, clothes, tents and money it said it would send through the government's civil affairs department or other charity organizations, UCA News reports.

The northern China-based Jinde Charities, a national Catholic non-governmental organization, has also appealed on its website for prayers and donations for earthquake survivors.


Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Testimony of young Indian who met Pope in Korea
Testimony of young Indian who met Pope in Korea
Preparations of the Closing Mass of 6th Asian Youth Day
Missionary of Charity, Korea
Testimony of Christian Love during Pope's Visit to Korea
Religious Sisters in South Korea react to Pope Francis kissing a baby
Warm atmosphere during Holy Mass at Daejeon World Cup Stadium
Images inside Pope Francis flight to South Korea
The tombs of the early Christians
Missionaries of Africa, called "the White Fathers"
Italian youth give testimony after mission to Peru
Interview with Iraqi Ambassador to the Holy See on the persecution of Christians
New book 'The Vatican unknown'
A Look at India from Rome
3D Church mapping
#PAUSEforPeace Initiative
Dedicating art to San Juan de la Cruz
A state without territory elects new government
The renewal of the Legionaries of Christ
Presentation of the book "The Pastor"
Synod on the Family October 2014
Aug
20

Liturgical Calendar

August 20, 2014

Saint Bernard, Abbot and Doctor of the Church

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 19:23-30

Gospel
Date
08/19/14
08/18/14
08/17/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Ezek 34: 1-11
Gospel:: Mt 20: 1-16

Saint of the Day

St. Bernard de Clairvaux »

Saint
Date
08/18/14
08/17/14

Homily of the Day

Mt 19:23-30

Homily
Date
08/19/14
08/18/14
08/17/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: