By now nearly all the world is aware of the devastating 7.0 earthquake hitting Port-au-Prince, Haiti on Tuesday. It’s been heart-wrenching to see the images and stories of destruction and desperation through media report . It’s hard to resist the intense desire to just rush to the airport, and book the next flight to HELP somehow!! Ironically, this generous spirit of charity has actually caused problems. As Haiti Aid Begins to Arrive, it is proving too much, and too fast for the poor Haitian airport and ground support to handle. What an agonizing Catch 22! It is nice to have trusted sources providing simple ways to get involved, such as LDS Philanthropies, or the Red Cross (including – Texting “Haiti” to 90999).
Amid all of this chaos and heartbreak, thankfully there have been stories of survival and hope, adding a positive perspective. I was particularly touched to hear that large groups are gathering and singing songs of praise together! What a beautiful testament to the faith and heart of the people of Haiti. We were also relieved to learn that All LDS Missionaries In Haiti Are Safe – and that LDS Church Humanitarian Aid mobilized and shipped within 12 hours – with aid continuing to progress. This gives balm to the troubled heart. I know from past experience with large-scale tragedy, there will be many more miraculous and heartwarming stories to hear in the future. But, during these beginning stages of disaster, the negative usually far outweighs positive. Being able to see the whole picture is filtered through a slow motion lens.
I have reflected on the most recent lead article in the January issue of the LDS Liahona Magazine. This publication is the church’s globally distributed magazine – a sister publication to the North American ‘Ensign Magazine’. The First Presidency Message for the month of January 2010 is interstingly enough entitled Hold On A Little Longer written by President Dieter F. Uchtdorf.
His message of hope seems especially appropriate, and even prophetic. I would like to direct his words specifically to all suffering due to the Haiti tragedy:
“…hold on a little longer—even when things look bleak. Know and remember this: the Lord loves you. He remembers you. And He will ever sustain those who “endure in faith to the end” (D&C 20:25).
You are continually in my thoughts and my prayers. May you each find peace amid the chaos. May you hold tight to your faith, and feel strength in singing praise and hymns together. May you feel the Savior’s love for you individually, and experience tender mercies. May those who are desperately and tirelessly working to send aid reach you as quickly as possible! And may God work His mighty miracles in this hour of great need.
This is my prayer – Your sister, MoSop
video courtesy Libera.uk.org