One Month Later: Haitians Hold Vigil

JDC’s Chief Operating Officer Judy Amit shares her observations from the ground on the one-month anniversary of the 7.0 magnitude earthquake that devastated more than 3 million of Haiti’s residents.

Today the people of Haiti began a three-day commemoration for the victims of last month’s horrific earthquake. Through fasting and prayer, island residents are honoring both the dead and the living. In the streets we see masses of people gathering and praying, singing quietly and swaying rhythmically ... remembering those who were killed and giving thanks for those who survived. It is a moving occasion—one that is easy to identify with no matter where you are from or what you believe in ... whether you are Catholic, Protestant, or Jewish ... Buddhist, Muslim, or atheist. Natural disasters have no boundaries and can strike anytime, any place, wreacking havoc on all, regardless of background, ethnic group, religion, or social status.

This is our fourth day in Haiti. Every hour that passes seems like twenty-four. The experiences and sights challenge one’s emotions and thoughts, sending them into overdrive. The amount of pain and suffering ... the magnitude of the destruction ... are difficult to comprehend. When there is so much that needs to be done, where does one begin to help? It will take billions of dollars and many years before some sort of semblance of normalcy is restored to Haiti.

JDC partners on the ground are doing amazing work in difficult and impossible situations. We know that to save one life is to save the world entire ... and we must continue to do this over and over again, one act at a time.

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