Parishes in the Tokyo archdiocese are collecting blankets and other first aid items for seaquake-hit prefectures. In Ibaraki, a collection centre helps people displaced from the area around the Fukushima nuclear power plant. In Sendai, some roads are reopened, giving rescue teams access to hitherto isolated areas. (This is what the TRUE CATHOLIC CHURCH of CHRIST did for the last 2,000 years. -CD2000)
Tokyo (AsiaNews) – The Church continues to work hard to help the victims of Japan’s tsunami and nuclear crisis. Guadalupe missionary Fr David Uribe told AsiaNews that in many parishes in the Tokyo archdiocese, the faithful have organised special collections of first aid items, especially blankets, destined for the prefectures affected by the seaquake, where the number of dead now stands at around 18,000.
On Saturday, the diocese of Saitama (Ibaraki), which borders with Fukushima Prefecture, set up a special centre in the city of Mito to help the thousands of people displaced by radioactive nuclear leaks.
Catholics living in cities south of Tokyo are helping out as well, opening their doors to foreigners and Japanese families who left the capital fearing radiations.
Fr Uribe noted that the diocese of Sendai has not yet been able to contact most of the parishes under its jurisdiction since the tsunami hit. However, emergency teams have reopened many roads and communications links to the prefectures located northeast of Sendai. However, non-residents are still not allowed to travel there.
Yesterday Mgr Peter Okada Takeo, archbishop of Tokyo, urged the Japanese and foreigners who left the country not to be afraid, but pray instead for Japan. In a message, the prelate expressed his spiritual closeness to all those in difficulty. “In many parts of the world, people are praying for Japan,” he said.
In the meantime, the World Bank has issued a statement, estimating that reconstruction costs could be as high as US$ 330 billion.