Mission Teams Desperately Needed for Mexican Earthquake Recovery

MORELOS, MEXICO (January 2, 2018) – Local Covenant Church of Mexico congregations have done a heroic job rebuilding homes and ministering to families devastated by last September’s deadly earthquakes, but they are in desperate need of help from mission teams to work alongside them, said Dale Lusk, ECC director of global engagement.

Mexico’s Covenant churches, which have few resources themselves, have been working continuously since the quakes struck, said Lusk. “Everyone understands that there were multiple historic natural disasters in recent months and that there have been multiple calls for assistance for each of the impacted areas, but the disasters in the United States overshadowed the horrific effects from the earthquakes in Mexico.”

Lusk leads Merge, a ministry of Serve Globally that helps coordinate mission trips. The ministry has assisted many Covenant churches that have generously sent members to help victims of last year’s storm in Houston. He added that the need for Covenant assistance in Mexico is as great, if not greater, due to the lack of resources.

More than 400 people were killed in the Mexico earthquakes, and more than 100,000 homes were destroyed or damaged. “Hundreds, if not thousands of families, who lost their homes have received little or no government assistance following the quakes, Lusk said. “They are still living in difficult conditions.”

“Receiving volunteers would be a huge encouragement to the Covenant churches working so hard in the rebuilding,” Lusk added. “It would still mean more to the people of Tetela, Morelos, to know that even people from the USA and Canada would be willing to be with them in their hardship, to listen to their stories, and love them as people loved by God.”

Local Covenant congregations have so far helped build 19 homes for families in the village of Tetela del Volcan. The first family was an elderly couple taking care of three small children, two of whom had been abandoned by their daughter. They were living under a plastic tarp with a bed and one dresser. The family had been denied aid by the government.

When a Covenant Church in Mexico City heard about the family’s plight from the Covenant Church in Cuautla, Morelos, an offering was taken, and now the Covenant churches are building the family a home out of cement block.

The grandfather, Don Filogonio, had never had a cement block home before and when he went with the church to purchase the materials, he proudly announced to the workers at the materials store, “These materials are for my home! Can you believe it?”

Another family of at least nine people from three generations were living in a stable with their animals after their house collapsed.

Two members were nearly killed by the quake, Lusk said. A mother was hanging laundry when the ground started shaking. She ran inside and picked up her sleeping toddler and rushed outside the front door. Immediately after they crossed the threshold the entire home collapsed.

“With the help of the Covenant Churches in Mexico, they now have a simple small wooden house to live in until they can get their lives back together,” Lusk said.

Trips can be coordinated through Merge. For more information, contact Dale Lusk at 956-458-9568 or dale.lusk@covchurch.org.

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Stan Friedman

Stan Friedman is the news and online editor for the Covenant Companion and is grateful for the opportunity to serve in a job that combines his newspaper and pastoral ministry experience. He has been to 15 Bruce Springsteen concerts in four cities and listened to “Thunder Road” an average of at least once a day for 41 years.

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