Like Hurricane Katrina that devastated the southeastern United States in 2005, the 9.0 earthquake and tsunami in Japan causes us to confront our vulnerability in the face of powerful natural disasters – risks that even developed countries of the world with sophisticated emergency response capacities and extensive national resources cannot eliminate.
Just as Great Lent is a time for us to set aside our human hubris and focus on preparing ourselves spiritually, natural disasters like the earthquake and tsunami also serve as reminders for us to prepare ourselves physically for the critical hours and days before even the most capable emergency response systems can respond to our needs.
I encourage everyone to prepare emergency plans and gather family emergency supplies. Helpful resources are available on IOCC's website at www.iocc.org/emergency.
Each day we are confronted with far less dramatic – but equally deadly and urgent – natural and man-made disasters that families face around the world. The lack of access to clean water that kills millions each year.
The lack of access to adequate food and nutrition. The lack of access to life-saving medicines and health care.
In the pages that follow, you will read how your service to our fellow human beings through IOCC is helping young families in Greece to rebuild farms destroyed by wildfires, entrepreneurs in Bosnia-Herzegovina who are building small businesses and creating new opportunities fifteen years after the end of the war, isolated communities in Haiti that are piecing back their community after the earthquake last year, and the vital medical help being extended to assist Southern Sudan.
As you read these stories, we thank God for His protection and all of the blessings we enjoy each day of our lives that you have shared with these families to give them hope and new opportunities.
Yours in Christ,
Constantine M. Triantafilou
Executive Director & CEO