HONG KONG – Since the Richter-scale magnitude 8 earthquake struck China two months ago, the disaster relief work in Sichuan has slowly moved into the reconstruction stage. In the afternoon of July 13th, believers, pastors, and ministry workers gathered to pray on the most urgent topics of need -- praying that the Lord can choose the "Nehemiah" to bear the burden of reconstructing Sichuan.
“Sichuan Disaster Relief – All Hong Kong Christian Prayer and Movement” Prayer Meeting arranged by Hong Kong Chinese Christian Churches Union, Jireh Fund, and Media Evangelism called several ministers and ministry representative to led the crowd to pray for seven topics one by one: 1. Pray that there can be engineers without borders; 2. Pray that the Lord can give the knowledge of earthquake prediction; 3. Pray for FEBC’s support work in mainland; 4. Pray for the inhabitants at Sichuan; 5. Pray that the Lord can choose the “Nehemiah” to bear the burden of reconstructing Sichuan; 6. Pray for service with the heart of Christ; 7. Pray that the power of the gospel can be revealed in Sichuan.
Mrs. Chan, executive director of Jireh Fund, shared the present situation of those in Sichuan. In the hard-hit district of Yingxiu, the officials have closed off the entire area, allowing access only to the supply movers and reporters, because many of the survivors are still mourning for the lost ones killed in the disaster they want to prevent anyone from joking around.
Frankly speaking, the only way the wounds inside the survivors can heal is through the passing of time, she said. Until now, the locals haven’t held any large funeral service to help the friends and family members of the deceased to cut off the sorrows and emotions. She felt that it is very essential to pray for the survivors. Only God can give them true comfort.
Although the recent media coverage on Sichuan earthquake has been decreasing gradually, many relief teams are just beginning to begin the work of reconstruction. Chan urged for serious prayers that the Lord will select the Nehemiah to carry this burden of reconstructing Sichuan.
According to reports from Chinese authorities, the cost of reconstruction is estimated to exceed one thousand billion RMB. In the reconstruction blueprint, 3.5 million pairs of houses for the farmland villagers, 1 million pair of housing for the city dwellers, schools facilities of area of 1,797.9 square meters, 11,000 basic health facilities, 15 national and provincial railway and freeways of 4,290km long, other important financial railway of 715km long and 22,000km of roads in the farmlands will be reconstructed and restored.
According to sources, Hong Kong will be responsible for 100 billion dollars. How will the people in Hong Kong look at this figure? The reconstruction work is enormous, so only the Nehemiah, who fears God, relies upon God, asking for God’s wisdom and heart, can bear this responsibility; Chan urged the believers to pray for this.
Besides this, Audrey Lo, board director of Jireh Fund, specially urged the believers to pray for the disaster relief teams to serve with the heart of Christ.
Lo said that the Son of man came not to be served, but to serve. She hopes that the coworkers in the disaster areas can serve with the heart of Christ, willingly become the servant of all and frequently reminding oneself as the tool being used by God.
Furthermore, Lo suggested the ten conditions in assisting in the reconstruction effort, which is not a matter of abilities, but of the mental quality: 1) must speak fluent mandarin; 2) must have a basic understanding of Chinese culture; 3) must be low-key, keep from transmitting personal thoughts; 4) work actively, won’t be affected by the unstable conditions and pressures; 5) must be able to work together in a work and follow the instructions of the leaders; 6) must be able to enter China without a visa; 7) must be prepared to work under harsh conditions; 8) must have stable emotions; 9) the team must enter and exit as a team; 10) the team should remain for a period of two weeks.
[Editor's note: reporter Eunice Or from Hong Kong contributed to this report.]