Very respected and beloved Vladika Hilarion: With hearts full of gratitude to our Lord and to our Hierarchs, we want to share with you the latest news from our distressed country: Fr. Alexei is alive and well, and so is Matushka Brenda and all the family! Only today, after 48 hours of anguished uncertainty, relying only on God's mercy and Saint Nektarios and Saint Siluan’s protection, our community members managed to communicate with our Batiushka, as one of the telephone companies partially reestablished the communication with the zone.
He's shocked by the surrounding human tragedies, and has been very busy helping people, working with so many wounded and mortally injured persons in the hospital and all the desperate and stressed around. As he also had no news from Santiago, he was concerned and praying for his people here. His house resisted the earthquake, although much of the houseware is broken and destroyed. They have water supply and food enough at least until the weekend. In Santiago and Valdivia all the members of the communities are OK, with different degree of material damage, nothing too severe, but all are alive and well, and currently that's enough for thanking God.
In Santiago everything is returning slowly to normal, we now are engaged in collecting some money for father Alex, as it is yet impossible to travel from or to Concepción, and that city is indeed in a huge catastrophe, with extreme shortage of fuel, drinking water, food, medications and so on. Currently, the area is under military control, because shortage of essential goods, larceny and plundering overwhelmed normal emergency agencies. In Father Alex's neighborhood, the neighbors themselves are guardians watching during the night to prevent theft, that's the level of social chaos.
It was a great spiritual relief and support to read your statement and received the telephohe calls from the Synod and also the long call from Vladika John, very lovingly concerned with all of us.
We thank you sincerely for your prayers. As you say in your statement "We look for comfort in Christ" and we are sure that the prayer of our Archpastors and all the fathers and our brothers and sisters within our Holy Church are certainly helping to draw Lord's mercy upon us and upon all our suffering fellow-citizens.
Please, don’t' forget us aside in your prayers and keep all of us, mainly Fr. Alexei and his people in Concepción, under your blessing.
Kissing your right hand with much love and respect
We remain yours in Christ
Saint Nektarios Parish, Santiago, Chile
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