Appeal for disaster victims in Samoa, Tonga and Indonesia

An appeal for prayer and funds for victims of the tsunami andearthquake tragedies in Samoa, Tonga and Indonesia has beenlaunched by the Methodist Church in Britain.

The Church's World Mission Fund granted £10,000 to aid the reliefwork of partner Churches in the region.

Steve Pearce, Partnership Coordinator for Asia and the Pacific,said: "As ever our partner Churches will feel enormously supportedknowing that Methodists in Britain are praying for them. The appealand grant money will go to partner Churches, which are playing animportant role in rebuilding communities."

Anyone wishing to donate to the appeal can do so online here or by sending a cheque payable to the World Mission Fundand posting it to Dave Bennett, Fundraising Coordinator, atMethodist Church House, 25 Marylebone Road, London, NW1 5JR. Postaldonations should be labelled 'Pacific Appeal'.
(UPDATE JAN 2010 - This Appeal raised in excess of £30,000and is now closed.)

A State of Emergency was declared in Tonga for Niuatoputapu, theclosest island to Samoa with a population of around 1,000 people.The General Secretary of the Free Wesleyan Church in Tonga is dueto travel to Niuatoputapu by boat today. The 1,000 inhabitants ofNiuatoputapu island have been badly hit by the tsunamis andearthquakes which have rocked the area. Food, clothing and kitchenutensils are set to arrive in Niuatoputapu by boat tomorrow.

Steve added: "I have been unable to reach the President or theMethodist Church headquarters in Samoa by phone, but it is clearthat the Church will be heavily involved in the recovery bothspiritually and pastorally in the weeks to come."

In Indonesia, the main centre of the earthquake damage has been inPadang on the island of Sumatera. The Methodist Head Quarters is inMedan more than 1,000 miles away.

Steve continued: "We have not heard news from the Methodist Churchin Padang as yet. We have sent an initial solidarity grant and willrespond further to our partner Church as their need becomesclearer. I have assured the church and its members of our prayersand support."

Updates on the partner Churches in the affected region will bepublished on this website as soon as news is available.

Churches are encouraged to use the following prayer during worshipon Sunday.


Loving God,
Who cares ceaselessly for all creation,
We pray for the people of Samoa;
That they may know your pacific touch in these days of earthquakeand tsunami,
That the ocean, the moana, may continue to surround and sustainthem,
That your compassion may help women, men and children
Live with the loss of their loved ones, Overcome the destruction oftheir homes and livelihoods and
Deal with the fear of what the future may hold. Let us feel thebreeze of your Spirit in the sails of our companionship with theisland peoples of the Pacific and
Let us see the light of your presence as we plot the course of ourcommon discipleship within your worldwide Church.