Super typhoon Haiyan slammed into central Philippines during the early morning hours on Friday local time. Storm centers and journalists are calling this the most powerful storm ever to make landfall.
Seen from space, the storm covers the entire nation and is about 372 miles in diameter. Winds are gusting up to 235 mph and storm surges are creating waves up to 19 feet high battering coastal areas.
This super typhoon hit the same area destroyed by a 7.2 magnitude earthquake merely 3 weeks ago, so many families are still living in tents without safety of stronger and more protective structures.
At the time of publication, the extent of damage is unknown but many people remain cautious, vigilant, and hunkered down in their homes. Nazarene rapid assessment teams will meet at the Philippines Field Office in Manila a few hours from now local time to strategize response. The teams will prioritize needs among the most affected communities while mobilizing volunteers and resources to meet these needs. The Philippines Nazarene Disaster Response teams have been actively engaged in disaster response all over the country for the last few months due to several natural and human-made disasters.
The Associated Press reported that one Filipino governor said, When youre faced with such a scenario, you can only pray, and pray and pray.
That is what we are asking you to do immediately. Lets pray for the Asia-Pacific Nazarene Compassionate Ministries teams responding to people impacted by this typhoon. Please forward this story and video to your networks and call your churches to prayer.
The Church of the Nazarene in the Philippines reports 300 organized churches, another 50 developing churches, 25,000 members, average weekly worship attendance of 15,000, and 400 ministers, including ordained elders.
-By Dr. Daniel Ketchum, Director, Nazarene Missions International
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