Fiji emerges from Cyclone Tomas

By March 18, 2010

Fiji (MNN) — Fiji suffered
significant damage in the wake of Cyclone Tomas. The storm left widespread
destruction throughout the South Pacific island chain. The one-time Category 4 storm battered Fiji's
northern islands for parts of three days, with gusts up to 275 km/hr (170 mph).

The nationwide curfew lifted
yesterday, but a state of emergency remains in effect for 30 days. Damage estimates from Tomas are expected to exceed
Cyclone Mick's $25 million footprint in

Communications are still out in
many areas. Relief supplies and temporary shelter are being
airlifted in.  Assessment teams are also
carrying out surveys of the damage.

Amidst the recovery, there were
questions about whether or not the Fiji Crossroad Bible Institute team could
continue to work.

Crossroad's David Schuringa says
their Australian team is keeping a close eye on the situation. "It's not only a matter of the cyclone
and the cyclone damage, but the military regime in Fiji uses every
opportunity possible to be able to take
more control, to show force, to show power and to keep that suppression going.
So you have a two-pronged emergency in situations like this."

The outreach is still in the
early stages. Their Australian
distribution center has steadily expanded the inmate Bible study program since
2008. In fact, CBI Bible studies are delivered to nine prisons located in and
around the capital city, Suva.

Within the first couple of weeks,
there were over 200 lessons being completed and processed. That number continues to grow. 

The Crossroad team says they don't
anticipate any disruption to their Bible study and discipleship programs to
inmates. But, says Schuringa, you can
pray. "So far, the Bible study program for the prisoners is under their
radar and continuing on, but we're going to monitor the situation quite

CBI has guided thousands of
inmates through a faith-based re-entry education and equipped the church to
make disciples and support them. You can help inmates study the Word of God
not only by praying, but by becoming an instructor. For details, click here.

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