Greetings Class of 2004,|
In the wake of the recent earthquakes in Haiti, Chile, and now Mexico, Westmont students, faculty, and alumni have been reaching out to those in need. Westmont class agents recently received the following letter from a 2004 graduate whose life has been directly impacted by the recent earthquakes:
Jasmyn (Cox) Guarin '04|
I've been living the last four years here in Santiago, Chile. I'm from California so I know what earthquakes are and even here in Chile the earth trembles quite a bit since it's the most active place on earth, but last month's earthquake was something else! It was named the 5th largest earthquake in recorded history, an 8.8 magnitude.
Now that I have my little one-year-old boy, Matías, the reaction in the middle of the night to be shaken awake like that was to immediately run to his crib and scoop him up so we could go take refuge. The earthquake was so strong and so long, but amazingly about nothing happenned in my apartment and thankfully all my husband's family here is okay. The great thing about Chile is they have very high building standards so that they can resist earthquakes.
The unfortunate thing is that those building standards weren't around years ago and still many people live in these adobe structures calling them their homes. The earthquake shattered them to pieces so millions in Chile, especially those of the lowest income level are without a home right now. The most dramatic damage during the earthquake was like 5-7 hours south of Santiago closer to the epicenter, especially in the towns affected by the tsunami that came afterwards causing homes and family members to disappear in moments.
The Chileans have really taken it upon themselves to help one another, and you see "Fuerza Chile" written on back windshields, across banners stretched across skyscrapers, and even on cement trucks. People of all ages are donating needed goods and volunteering their time to help those affected by the quake.
In fact, my own church (www.iclam.cl) is canceling Easter servcies to use the three-day weekend to do special programs for families in Ithaué and help them to remove the rubble of their fallen homes in preparation for reconstruction or temporary housing. This service project of adopting the town is called "Yo Estoy Contigo", which has a double significance of us coming along side them, let them know we care, and yet it is truly God that reminds us when we face that which troubles and scares us: "I am with you".
Our hope is to eventually completely rebuild 5 homes; however, we lack the funds at the moment, if anyone would like to learn more sbout our cause you can contact me by e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Your prayers are really needed in Chile. Disasters like these are very tragic, but amidst the chaos, God is working small wonders in the hearts of men. We pray that many come to know God as a real person in their lives and come to trust their life onto Christ and his salvation and grace.
Thank you Jasmyn for your letter!
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Recent and Upcoming Events
- February 16: Westmont faculty homes went solar. Read more.
- February 19: Westmont welcomed Mexico's former president Vicente Fox to campus. Watch his chapel address on YouTube.
- February 26: Dr. Jeff Schloss, Professor of Biology at Westmont since 1981, received the T.B. Walker Chair in the Natural and Behavioral Sciences, which will allow him to collaborate more with students in research.
- April 21: The Spring 2010 Student Research Symposium will feature students' research from all disciplines and majors.
- May 7-8: At Commencement 2010, the Westmont community will honor 330 graduates and welcome them as new Westmont Alumni! Find out more on the Commencement Page.
- May 17-June 30, Annual Class Challenge. Watch your mailbox for more information in the coming weeks.
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