Breaking and Updated. Prayers for the people of Japan, where an 8.9 level earthquake struck northeast Honshu island, 230 miles northeast of Tokyo, at 2:49 pm local time Friday (12:49 am Eastern time), triggering tsunamis that struck Tokyo and other parts of Japan.
Tsunami warnings and alerts have been issues all across the northern Pacific and as far south as Australia.
This prayer is offered for the people of Japan on the Church of England website:
O loving Creator,
bring healing and hope to those who, at this time, grieve, suffer pain, or who have been affected by the earthquake and tsunami in Japan.
We remember those who have died and we pray for those who mourn for them.
We pray for those who may be affected as the tsunami spreads across the Pacific.
May we all be aware of Your compassion, O God, which calms our troubled hearts and shelters our anxious souls.
May we pray with humility with our troubled and struggling brothers and sisters on earth.
May we dare to hope that through the generosity of the privileged, the destitute might glimpse hope, warmth and life again.
Through our Saviour Christ who lives with us, comforts us and soothes us.
USPG has been in touch with officials from the Nippon Sei Ko Kai (The Anglican Church of Japan). Here is what they report:
Mr Shinya Samuel Yawata, Partners in Mission Secretary for Nippon Sei Ko Kai (Anglican Church in Japan), told USPG: ‘It was the biggest shake I have ever experienced.
In an email sent three hours following the quake, he wrote: ‘All trains are not operating in Tokyo. I am stuck in the office [in Toyko] and likely I will stay overnight here.
‘Provincial office did not suffer any damage and we are all OK except transportation.
‘Because of the heavy phone traffic, Tohoku Diocesan Office could not be reached. So we do not know how bad it could be, but I am afraid there probably much damage in that area.’
Awaiting news from Tohoku Diocese
Rachel Parry, USPG Regional Manager for Asia, said: ‘We keep all the affected people in Japan, and in particular our fellow Anglicans, especially those who have not yet been able to be reached in Tohoku Diocese, in our thoughts and prayers. I have been promised that as soon as there is any further news, the provincial office will be in touch with USPG.’
Further tsunamis are being predicted for the wider area of the Pacific Ocean, including the Philippines, Indonesia, Taiwan, Hawaii, the Pacific coast of Russia and North, South America and New Zealand. Japan is preparing for further aftershocks.
USPG is waiting to hear a response from USPG Mission Companion Claire Gelder, based in Nagoya, Port City, south of Tokyo, where she is teaching English to help raise funds for local mission. We are also waiting to hear back from the Asian Rural Institute, in Tochigi-ken, north of Tokyo, where USPG funds the training of Anglican rural leaders from Africa and Asia.
UPDATED: more below:
From the Anglican Church of Canada
Primate responds to disaster in Japan
March 11, 2011--What follows is the text of a letter from Archbishop Fred Hiltz, Primate of the Anglican Church of Canada, to his colleague, Archbishop Nathaniel Makoto Uematsu, Primate of the Nippon Sei Ko Kai.
I write on behalf of your brothers and sisters in Christ in the Anglican Church of Canada.
We are so saddened by the terrible news of today's 8.9 earthquake and subsequent tsunami that have crushed or swept so many people to their deaths and caused such widespread destruction. As we follow the news we recognize your very real fears of after-shocks and further tsunamis.
We assure you of our sympathy and of our prayers for all who have died and those who mourn their loss, for all who are injured and those who tend them, for all who frantically wait word of their loved ones.
We hold before God all those who are engaged in the relief efforts as well as you and all who are ministering to the needs of a stricken, grieving nation.
In the compassion of Christ,
Fred J. Hiltz
Archbishop and Primate