January 14th 2010: Earthquake Update

Dear loved ones,

Well, Praise God forevermore!  We are all alive and well (Pastor Jean and Family), but the disaster is enormous.  The church and school in Carrefour have suffered some damage.  We are yet to know about the state of the school in Taifer.  Our home is basically intact but we try not to go in it unless it is absolutely necessary.   All throughout the day and night there are tremors, some bigger than others.  People have to basically sleep in the streets away from walls and buildings. We spent the first night sleeping on chairs in the street in front of our house, but last night we slept in the yard of one of our next door neighbors under some banana trees.

We thank God that finally we are able to get internet signal, but we are low on electricity as there is no city light and our backup batteries are almost out of power.  We do not yet know the state of all our members as communication is very difficult.  According to the one radio station that is still functioning it is being estimated that over three hundred thousand people have died and there are many others who are under collapsed buildings who are unable to get out.  There are many dead in the streets etc. and the government has not yet given a go ahead to bury them in common graves.  There is fear of an epidemic breaking out if this is not dealt with immediately. 

Haiti needs your prayers and financial help more than ever.  Haiti also needs serious medical aid.  Many doctors and nurses have died and many injured are dying from lack of care and medicine. Thanks for praying and please continue to do so as the situation remains very serious.  So many people have lost all, both homes and loved ones.

One of the major concerns also is that all the dangerous criminals who were in prison have escaped. In the midst of all the pain, people are breaking in and stealing from businesses.  Many students have died in schools and universities that had an evening shift.  Other schools and universities that were closed for the evening have also collapsed dealing a heavy blow to the educational system. 

We will continue to keep you up to date as much as we can.

Jean Heder Petit-Frere

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