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Relief work begins.

Jesuit Fr. Susai Nathan and Srs. Nirmla and Anilda, relief workers, speak to Nazeer Ahmed Parrey near the wreckage of his house in Jabala, India, following a magnitude 7.6 earthquake that struck along the Pakistan-India border. Official estimates put the death toll at 23,000 in Pakistan and 1,300 in India Oct. 12. Up to 5 million people are homeless. Archbishop Lawrence Saldanha of Lahore, the Pakistani bishops' conference president, expressed "profound shock and grief at the large-scale destruction of life and property." He urged all Pakistani Christians to contribute one day's wages for relief aid. Caritas India, the social service agency of the Indian bishops, rushed a team from its headquarters in New Delhi to the Kashmir valley as the first step in preparing long-term assistance. The initial focus will be medicine and food, said Fr. Varghese Mattamana, the agency's deputy director. The local church's services through schools and hospitals across Jammu and Kashmir, India's only Muslim-majority state, have created a good network, he said.

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Title Annotation:IN THE BEGINNING; Pakistan-India earthquake
Publication:National Catholic Reporter
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:9PAKI
Date:Oct 21, 2005
Previous Article:Peace and a 'Christian' nation.
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