Prayers for Vanuatu
Vanuatu is a chain of about 83 islands with a total land area of 12,336 square kilometres, located in the South Pacific, east of Australia, north-east of New Caledonia, west of Fiji and south of the Solomon Islands.
Vanuatu was hit by a category five storm, with winds of up to 185 miles per hour, on Saturday 14th March 2015. Vanuatu's president says the cyclone has destroyed or damaged 90% of buildings.
There is major concern about islands to the south, including Tanna, which was in the direct path of the storm, and the Red Cross have reported “utter devastation” on Tanna with most homes destroyed.
Aid has now begun arriving in the Vanuatu, but contact has still not been made with some of its more remote islands. Some aid agencies have reported that Vanuatu’s islands 'face at least a week without help'.
Vanuatu is in the Province of Melanesia which encompasses the Republic of Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, and the French Trust Territory of New Caledonia, both sovereign island nations in the South Pacific. Mothers’ Union currently has staff in the province and are trying to make contact with Mothers' Union in country to hear more about the situation and for specific prayer requests.
- Vanuatu’s motto is ‘In God We Stand’. We pray that in this time of trouble and devastation, the people of Vanuatu would know God’s presence with them.
- We pray for the Archbishop of Melanesia and Bishop of Central Melanesia, The Most Revd David Vunagi and his wife Mrs. Mary Vunagi, Provincial President of Mothers’ Union, as they make contact with the Bishops in the affected areas, support Mothers’ Union members and consider how to respond to the situation.
- We also pray for the National Disaster Management Office of the Vanuatu Government who is coordinating the response to this disaster.
- As the aid effort begins, with limited information and scarcity of resource, we pray Lord that you would help relief workers to have wisdom and clarity in assessing need.
- As communications are coming back online we pray that the people of Vanuatu will be able to communicate their need and that it may be met.
- We pray for all those waiting to hear if their families are safe.
- We pray for comfort for all those who have lost loved ones and their homes in this time of distress. May they know the gentle touch of God at this time and in the coming days.
- We pray for the 1139 Mothers’ Union members in Vanuatu that their needs would be met, and that they would be able to bring comfort to those around them.
- We thank God for the Mothers’ Union parenting training that has been taking place in Melanesia this week.
- We pray for Edith Willie CDC and Parenting Training from Vanuatu and Shirley Smith, CDC and parenting trainer from Banks and Torres who are both stuck in Honiara still.
- We pray for Sheran Harper, Mothers’ Union General Trustee and Worldwide Parenting Trainer who has been leading the parenting training is waiting to return to Guyana. We pray for their safety and swift return home as well as for others who have been stranded in the area.
We join in the prayer of the Melanesian Mission:
Be the canoe that holds me up in the sea of life;
Be the rudder that keeps me in the straight road;
Be the outrigger that supports me in times of temptation.
Let your Spirit be my sail that carries me through each day.
Keep my body strong so I can paddle steadfastly on in the voyage of life.