Hello all, this is what I received from Douglas tonight:
Today was a day that was beyond description. After meeting with Pastor Marky Kessa and Pastor Thomas Bernard, we headed together for Port-au-Prince. We were unprepared for what we would see there. The newscasts and other things we have seen on TV just do not do justice to the destruction and the death that we saw there.
We saw thousands of people living in what I would call refugee camps wherever was an open space, such as a soccer field, or even a cemetery. Most of the people have lost about everything that they have. Their only hope is to find food and water during the day at one of the locations that is passing it out.
I can’t even begin to count the number of buildings that were flattened like a stack of pancakes. We saw so many we almost became deadened to it and didn’t even take any more pictures. One can only imagine how many people are still buried in the rubble—surely many thousands. In at least five places people are still digging through the mess looking for their lost loved ones.
We passed refugee camp after refugee camp in the area around Carrefour on the way to Jacmel. Helicopters were taking some of the more critically injured to the huge hospital ship anchored a safe distance from the shore.
This evening we arrived in Jacmel only to see an equal amount of destruction. People spending the night out in the streets for fear of more earthquakes or aftershocks. We visited a camp on the soccer field here where thousands of people were preparing to spend the night. We then went on to one of Marky’s churches where about 100 people were preparing to spend the night. The faith of these people is an inspiration to us. Like Paul and Silas when in jail in Philippi, they were singing hymns and praising God for His goodness in Christ Jesus.
Aid in the form of water, food and shelter is still urgently needed here. My observation is that while we did awesome work bringing our US Marines here, the response of the international community has been rather weak. So much more is needed and could be done. Please support the efforts of LCMS World Relief.
We are overnighting in Jacmel.