Responding to the tragedy of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, Fr. José Ornelas Carvalho, superior general, writes the following:
It is with great sadness that we have witnessed once again the force and the devastation of extreme weather. This time it occurred in the Philippines. Typhoon Haiyan slammed into the Philippine coast last Friday. With storm surges of up to six meters and winds exceeding 200 km per hour, the death toll has reached many thousands, especially near the coasts. At least 800,000 people have been displaced.
It is with a sense of relief that we can report that none of our confreres in the Philippines has been killed or injured. We do not have a precise report yet as to the damage done by the winds. Some of the families of our Philippine priests and brothers were affected but we have heard of no deaths until now.
We wish to stand with the Philippine people and try to help them in this time of need. The General Administration has already sent $20,000 for relief assistance. We have sent the money to Fr. Francis Pupkowski, the superior of the Philippine Region, so that he can direct the relief money to the neediest parts of the country.
We want to express our sympathy and our support. We hope that with international assistance the Philippine people will soon be able to rebuild homes and replace the crops that were ruined by the very high winds. We will support them also with our prayers.
May the Lord accompany the Philippine people in this difficult time and give them courage and determination to restore their lives and their livelihoods.
In the Heart of Christ,
Fr. José Ornelas Carvalho
If you would like to make a donation to toward emergency relief in the Philippines, please click here. Our SCJ priests and brothers will be using money raised to directly assist those affected by the typhoon.