Japan’s Tragedy – Take Action

I wanted to share the following email communication I received this morning from a friend of mine in Tokyo. She has allowed me to share it with you all. 

"They say the tsunami waves bring all those heavy oil/gas kind of fuels of vessels/vehicles up on the ground, which ignite fires. Then there was this strong wind blowing, which spread the fires to the rest of the cities. The similar case happened about 20 years ago in Hokkaido. Actually, not only Tohoku area but also Kanto area including Tokyo got damaged. So many people in Tokyo are stuck in the city, since all JR trains operation got halted.
I remember in the Hanshin Earthquake, about 6000 people got killed. I am so sad and scared to know about the casualties this time. This time, up there, in some cases a whole community got gulped bu tsunami and just swept away, not just one.
It's so sad and i can't do anything."

There are so many pictures, so many stories in the news now about this horrific event, but I sometimes think, when we, the unaffected, are so far away, we tend to dwell on the horror without doing anything beyond offering a prayer. Don’t get me wrong, personally I think prayer is the first, best and last line in these circumstances. But there are things we can and should do for our brothers and sisters across the world.

Am I talking about sending money? You bet, but focused money through channels you can trust. Do you have a church home set up to help with disasters like this? I do. My church has a donation taken called “One Great Hour of Sharing” that covers anything from terrorist strikes to natural disasters. You can donate to OGHS through International Ministries, which has a website devoted ONLY to Earthquake/Tsunami relief for Japan. If you’re curious how they use the money or wish to know how the process works, click this link. I listed this one first because I’ve seen it work.

There’s the Red Cross and yes, that link will take you directly there. If you’re reading this on a smart phone, use that link instead or call 1-800-733-2767 (1-800-Red Cross).

Would you like to help send search and rescue teams? To donate to Doctors Without Borders, click the link and select the word “Donate” at the top of the screen. Please be aware, while I know these are legitimate institutions, I don’t know the ends and outs of how they use funds.

You can hear the helplessess in Mako’s note above. It made me want to do something and I plan to use one or more of the methods I’ve listed here. But more than that, I wanted to encourage Mako and others. When you see someone in danger, the first thing you do is throw them a rope. Give them your hand or something to connect them to you. What will you throw?