Many of you have seen reports of the major cyclone smashing into the east coast of India, targeting the city of Visakhapatnam, on October 12th. This cyclone, like a hurricane, has a name; it is “Hudhud” and is classed as a category 4 event. India is no stranger to cyclonic events. There have been five this year prior to Hudhud, all with wind speeds in the 35-50 mph range. Cyclones are the cause of much of the monsoon weather of India’s rainy season. They are tropical depressions that form and gather energy over the warm waters surrounding India and then come ashore to dump many inches of rain. Generally, most of their damage is the result of flooding rather than wind. But Hudhud was different, with wind speeds of 110 mph. No major damage was attributed to the other five cyclones, but Hudhud’s destructive cost is placed at 9.7 billion dollars. In a country where rural villagers still live in mud brick and palm frond huts, Hudhud represented total destruction. Many thousands of India’s poorest were left with nothing. Homes, farms, village businesses, churches and infrastructure were devastated. Two weeks after Hudhud, most of the effected area is still without power or safe water and in most cases, there is not even an estimate of when these will be restored.
With numbers like 9.7 billion dollars, it is tempting to say, “what can I possibly do?”. The simple answer is that you can help. Remember, the poorer a man is, the less it takes to make a difference. Salman, one of our Light to India Pastors, traveled to the affected area. With a few hundred dollars and the help of some other local pastors he knew, he assembled care packages consisting of blankets and food. These were then distributed to some of the hardest hit areas, in Jesus’ name. This accomplished two things: it blessed some people in great need and it was a positive witness for the name of Jesus. Most of these people were not Christians, but thankfulness is not limited to a single faith.
Please get in touch with us for more information about how you can help with the recovery effort.