The worst rains in a decade have brought chaos to Venezuela killing more than 40 people and leaving 95,000 homeless. Storms have triggered mudslides that have cut roads and toppled hillside homes, while rivers have burst their banks and coastal areas are widely flooded. The Religious Sisters of Charity have three sisters living in the affected area.
Sr. Bernadette Morgan reports here on what the effect has been in for them and the people they live amongst and work with:
"The rains of the last 3 weeks have left 42 dead to date in different states- some swept away and others buried under mudslides. The record rainfall for November was 288mm but this November we had 407.3mm - a state of emergency has been declared in many states. Over 61 main roads are damaged, up to 95,000 people affected (1,000 in our own parish). Schools, Hotels, military training schools, food-kitchens and even our Diocesan Retreat House have been taken over to accommodate those who are advised not to return to their houses in the "high risk" areas. There is a promise to build new houses quickly on whatever flat land can be found.
There is a great loss of cattle, crops and businesses.
In our state of Vargas the community councils and rescue teams were prepared and have worked in a coordinated way.
The generosity of the parishioners was a lesson to our young people as they went from house to house collecting clothes and food etc. for the homeless. Thank you for the support of your prayer for the people and ourselves at this time”.
Below are two photographs taken of the recent devastation: