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Update from the Turkish Baptist Alliance (6 February 2023)

“We had the worst earthquake in Turkey since 1939. The first big earthquake was 7.7 and it happened at 4 am in the morning. The centre of the earthquake was the southeastern city of Kahramanmaraş and 9 cities around were all affected. The second big earthquake was 7.4 and 145 earthquakes aftershock happened. 10 cities in southeast Turkey were seriously affected. More than 1,500 people died and sadly it will highly increase. We can not foresee how many people will die. 9,700 people were injured. 3,500 buildings have collapsed.

Our country is in great shock. Many buildings are damaged. People left their homes and their cities. There are a lot of traffic jams and it is very cold, it is snowing in most of the cities. This week the weather will be below 0 Celsius. The roads are also seriously damaged. This makes the search and rescue more difficult. The next 72 hours only professional search and rescue teams are allowed to go to the earthquake area.

Thanks to the Lord, our Baptist churches and the members are all well. Adana is among the affected cities. 15 buildings collapsed and many were damaged. It is not clear if the building where the church is meeting is damaged or not. Two neighbouring buildings collapsed to where the pastor of the Adana Baptist Church and General Secretary of our Union and his family is living. The church members of Adana Baptist Church are all fine. They are waiting in cars and parks.”

The hometown of Abdullah Ergüven, Pastor of Istanbul Baptist Church is Kahramanmaras. He has relatives and friends who are affected. He wants to go there but the roads and airports are closed at the moment.

We once again are blessed to have you as our family. Thank you for your messages, prayers and support. Please pray for our country and for the ones who lost their dear ones. The supplies needed and how you can help will be clear in the following days.


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