From the Worldwide Faith News archives

ABCUSA: Funds to Aid Costa Rica Flooding Relief

From "SCHRAMM, Richard" <>
Date Wed, 18 Dec 2002 11:08:33 -0500

American Baptist News Service (Valley Forge, Pa. 12/18/02)--The American
Baptist World Relief Office has provided $10,000 from One Great Hour of
Sharing funds to assist in relief efforts in the aftermath of damaging
flooding in Sixaola, Costa Rica. 

This money, released to American Baptist International Ministries, will be
used in Costa Rica to fund emergency food, beds, sheets, medicine, shoes and
clothing, among other commodities.

Jim and Sara Wiegner, American Baptist International Ministries missionaries
in Costa Rica, reported late last week that Sixaola, a town of 4,000 people,
was "filled with an 8" thick, creamy, chocolate blanket of mud; water is in
puddles everywhere and local electric and water services are very sporadic."

The flooding is the worst in Sixaola since 1958. The Wiegners noted: "There
is a shortage of food and most people have lost beds, furniture, clothes,
stoves, sewing machines, TVs, radios, washing machines, shoes and anything
else that can float down the river from a flooded house.  People were not
prepared for floodwaters that reached 10-12 feet high [and remained at that
level for two days].  Most peoples' businesses and houses were flooded even
on their second floors. The clean-up work is overwhelming." 

Stores, which were stocked for the Christmas season, suffered considerable

 "The losses are extreme but the hope is still much alive," the Wiegners
said.  "Everyone is very thankful that no one lost his or her life in the
flood.	Many told about daring rescues and near-death experiences [and]
everyone praised God for His safekeeping.... Since the floods the Baptist
Federation of Costa Rica has mobilized churches to raise money, send food
[and provide] youth to help out in the clean-up."

Jim Wiegner joined Baptist leaders and others in the region in an onsite
visit to the affected area last week.

American Baptists wishing to support relief efforts can do so through normal
channels--One Great Hour of Sharing (line 7 of the Monthly Report of Mission
Support), designating contributions "OGHS--Sixaola Flood/Costa Rica."  Those
wishing to contribute online can do so by accessing the "American Baptist
Missions" or "Give Now" pages of the ABCUSA Web


American Baptist News Service: Office of Communication, American Baptist
Churches USA, P.O. Box 851, Valley Forge, PA 19482-0851; (610)768-2077; fax:

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