Indonesia Christians Face Food Shortages After Deadly Quake

Sunday, January 31, 2021

By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent Worthy News

(Worthy News) - Christian survivors of a massive earthquake in heavily Islamic Indonesia urgently need food, blankets, suitable tents, and other essentials, aid workers said Sunday.

Barnabas Fund, an aid and advocacy group supporting Christians in the quake-hit Sulawesi region, told Worthy News that thousands of people have become homeless. Many Christians are sheltering in makeshift camps, the group explained. The most vulnerable are also suffering as believers reported a lack of baby milk, Worthy News learned.

It comes amid broader concerns that minority Christians are among those receiving little or no relief supplies. The government emergency response and aid for the survivors are inadequate," complained Barnabas Fund.

The group warned that the aid "is scheduled to cease altogether on February 8." Some of the makeshift camps "received no help at all for days after the quake," the group told Worthy News in a statement.

The desperation follows a powerful January 15 tremor shaking mainly the island of Sulawesi. That 6.2 magnitude earthquake killed at least 84 people, and "many thousands were left homeless in the regencies of Majene and Mamuju," Barnabas Fund added.

The previous day a 5.9 tremor rocked the same area, according to Christians familiar with the situation.

It raises funds to distribute rice, baby formula milk, blankets, sardines, and family and group tents to the troubled region. Amid the turmoil, local Christians are holding regular prayer services for the nation of 270 million people, Worthy News reported earlier.

Straddling the so-called Pacific Ring of Fire, Indonesia is prone to earthquakes. In 2018, a devastating 6.2-magnitude quake and subsequent tsunami struck the city of Palu in Sulawesi, killing thousands.