The remains of Blessed Sacrament Cathedral in Christchurch

The earthquake that struck New Zealand on Tuesday, and which has left at least about 100 people dead, has also brought devastation to the local Diocese of Christchurch. The cathedral, pictured to the left, is partially ruined, and the diocese is virtually out of business. This due to no computer access and their offices being closed.

Al the same, the diocesan website offers several updates in the situation in parishes, and it also calls for people to assist the Carmelites in clearing up an area of liquefaction, where soil behaves like a liquid due to the stress of the earthquake.

Bishop Barry Jones released the following message to his flock:

“With all the people of Christchurch and Canterbury I am stunned and deeply saddened by the loss of so many lives, the serious injuries to so many and the destruction of property that that has been visited upon us so violently and suddenly. I pray for those who have been killed and injured, and also for those closest to them who never imagined when they last saw them that anything like this would happen. There had been a sense of hope and confidence gradually growing as we came to terms with the consequences of the big earthquake last year, and this horrific disaster is a cruel blow to that hope.. I am greatly moved by the courage, dedication and skill of all those who are involved in rescuing and helping victims of this tragedy and I know that they will be supported by the heartfelt prayers of many many people for their safety and protection.”

Let us join those heartfelt prayers with our own, for the safety and security of the people of Christchurch Diocese and all New Zealand.

Photo credit: Diocese of Christchurch

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