Back to listMar 27, 2011

New Zealand Members Pray for Christchurch and Tohoku Quake Victims

SGI-New Zealandmembers pray for quake victimsSGI-New Zealand members pray for quake victims

During March, SGI-New Zealand members held special prayer meetings for lives lost in the Christchurch earthquake that hit New Zealand on February 22, as well as for victims of the Tohoku-Kanto earthquake in Japan on March 11 and for the fast and safe recovery of the affected regions.

SGI members belonging to the Arohanui District in Christchurch gathered on March 24 for a weekly group meeting. Since the earthquake in Christchurch, the SGI activity center previously used for meetings has been inaccessible due to damage to buildings nearby. In response, SGI members have opened their homes for small discussion meetings.

SGI members in ChristchurchSGI members in Christchurch

Some SGI members in and around Christchurch were impacted by the earthquake, which resulted in ground liquefaction, damaged homes and water outages. Although themselves victims of the disaster, the members have been distributing food and water and helping to remove rubble from areas affected by the disaster. SGI members also participated in the student volunteer army.

On March 23 and 27, SGI-New Zealand members in Wellington and Palmerston North conducted prayer meetings in local homes for those stricken in both New Zealand and Japan. A women's leader encouraged everyone to create value by applying the Buddhist concept of "turning poison into medicine" and to positively transform their difficult, negative or painful situations, using them to create new paths of hope.

[Adapted from an article in the April 12, 2011, issue of the Seikyo Shimbun, Soka Gakkai, Japan; photos courtesy of Takashi Yamamoto, Camilla Browne and Alex Lee]