By this message we are calling us all to rally in prayer for the town of Goma which is under varied threats since the eruption of the Nyiragongo volcano last Saturday evening.
The lava on the surface has stopped but the Vulcanologic Observatory of Goma reports that the cracks that are observed as stretching from the volcano mountain to the Kivu Lake mean that there might be some underground magmatic mouvement. This can result in an eruption anytime or in the release of toxic gaz or in unexpected reaction when underground lava gets in contact with the waters of the lake or the gaz under the lake.
Currently the movement of population is hard to control as there are a number of people stranded on the North side of the town trying to take the road to Rutshuru, Butembo that was cut by the lava and was reopened for a short time yesterday. With the new revelations, the population are requested not to walk on top of the lava to cross to go to Rutshuru as some did yesterday but to return to Goma and take the Sake road.
From the report of our Sharing The Land project Manager, Serge, who is already in Sake with his family since yesterday evening, there are no emergency dispositions yet to welcome the population that is flooding in thousands to Sake by road. The movement at the Goma beach where there are boats embarking people for Bukavu this morning is just overwhelming as every person wants to get on board.
Since last Sunday, the Goma airport is shut down and we have had four of our international staff who were on their way to the USA stranded in Goma. This morning they have managed to take the road to Kigali and fly this coming Saturday to the USA, God willing. There are still many friends and families in Goma. Monusco has decided to move the majority of its staff to Sake and Bukavu. This is an unprecedented situation as all schools in Goma are also closed and hospitals are to be evacuated. I called a friend from Heal Africa who is a Pastor and he reported that they cannot leave before all the patients are evacuated to a safer place.
We are inviting you to join us in prayer to God for the following:
- Protection for the people in the midst of this time of total uncertainty and possibility of unexpected reactions of the volcano.
- Promptitude for government leaders, church leaders and all organizations who have capacity to intervene to do so to allow the population to receive appropriate primary care in all aspects to avoid any outbreak of any other type of humanitarian disaster.
- Wisdom for the current authorities to know how to protect the goods and properties of the population left behind in Goma during this time of displacement.
- Help for us all to turn our eyes to God as the only source of true protection and lasting security in all aspects of life.
Our God is able and he will not let us down as the psalmist reminds us: “You have shown your people desperate times; you have given us wine that makes us stagger. But for those who fear you, you have raised a banner to be unfurled against the bow. Save us and help us with your right hand, that those you love may be delivered…” (Psalm 60.3-5).
Together in prayer union to storm heaven.
Dr. Honoré B. Kwany