COSTA RICA, by Rudolf Sauter and Maria Fischer •
This Thursday, a 7.0 earthquake, with its epicenter right off El Salvador’s Pacific coast, shook the Central American territory hours after hurricane Otto entered Nicaragua from the Caribbean. Within a few hours, these small Central American countries – Panama, Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica – many of them with a high degree of poverty, found themselves with quake damage in the west and a hurricane in the east.
Panamá, Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica… are countries that sound “familiar” to Connected Schoenstatters. Missionaries of the Schoenstatt Rosary Campaign are in all of them. There are beginnings of an organized Movement, and there is a thriving Movement in Costa Rica, where they recently blessed the foundation stone for the first Central American Shrine, days before the two natural disasters.
“Costa Rica needs us”
At least ten people died when Otto hit Costa Rica and another thirty are missing. The most affected areas are Upala, Bagaces and Los Chiles. The disaster left unstable conditions in the country caused by isolated rain on Friday and Saturday. Bridges are destroyed and routes are blocked, hundreds of houses were completely destroyed and many people lost everything.
The Schoenstatt Family did not wait; they launched an urgent call of solidarity of prayer, capital of grace, and food donations.
Dear Schoenstatt Family: Costa Rica needs us. Let us pray for all the victims; may the rescuers access isolated places. Let us help! Let us unite as a family, and if you wish to help, we ask for non-perishable food. Take it to one of the Headquarters, and then we will take them to one of the collection centers, probably the Red Cross. It is time to help our brothers and sisters of Upala, Bijagua, and Bagaces! It is time for solidarity!
Headquarters East opens from 8:00 to 12:00 and from 1:00 to 5:00. Donations can be left at the hall adjoining the Home Shrine.
An unexpected beginning of Advent.
A beginning of Advent solidarity.
An Advent that is truly an Advent.
Original: Spanish. Translation: Celina M. Garza, San Antonio, TX USA. Edited: Melissa Peña-Janknegt, Elgin, TX USA