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Religions rush to aid Japan

Aid efforts get under way to help stricken neighbour

Stephen Hong, Seoul

March 14, 2011

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Religious organisations in Korea have been mobilising resources to provide emergency aid for people in neighbouring Japan suffering after the largest earthquake ever recorded in the country. In Seoul archdiocese, Cardinal Nicholas Cheong Jin-suk of Seoul said in a message on March 12 that "the rescue work for survivors should be done as soon as possible," praying for quick recovery of survivors. Cardinal Cheong also promised his archdiocese would send emergency aid of US$50,000 to Japanese victims. His message was conveyed to Archbishop Ikenaga Jun of Osaka, president of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Japan, and Archbishop Okada Takeo of Tokyo. The death toll in Japan's earthquake and tsunami last Friday will likely run into tens of thousands, as millions of survivors were left without drinking water, electricity and proper food along the northeastern coast of Japan. Also, the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism announced today it would send some US$89,000 and dispatch 500 volunteers. Reverend Kim Young-ju, secretary of the National Council of Churches in Korea, issued his message on March 11, saying he was sure that Japanese people would overcome this tremendous disaster as they have got over earthquakes wisely. The (Protestant) Christian Council of Korea asked today its faithfuls to make donation for Japanese people, praying for the area affected to be restored quickly. Also, the Salvation Army Korea Territory announced today it would start to collect money for them for a month. The Seoul government has already sent a 102-member emergency service team to the worst damaged northeastern coastal area of Japan. Related report Asians gripped by tsunami scare KO13619.1645
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