In addition to all the death and destruction we’ve been reporting in our news reports (see the latest here), the earthquake on Tuesday in Christchurch, New Zealand has caused significant damage to the city’s two cathedrals, especially to their trademark spires.
(Photo: A girl with a Christmas hat in a makeshift camp in Port-au-Prince January 24, 2010/Shannon Stapleton)
Maritza Monfort is singing along to a Christmas carol in Creole on the radio, but the Haitian mother of two is struggling to lift her spirits. “I sing to ease my pain. If I think too much, I’ll die,” said Monfort, 38, one of over a million Haitians made homeless by a January earthquake that plunged the poor, French-speaking Caribbean nation into the most calamitous year of its history.
(Photo: The “Lord of the Miracles” painting during a procession in Lima October 18, 2010/Enrique Castro-Mendivil)
Thousands of worshippers dressed in purple robes paraded a revered icon through Peru’s capital this week in a tradition dating from 1687 when a mural depicting the same image of Jesus escaped unscathed in a powerful earthquake.
One of the healing measures suggested when Ireland’s Catholic clerical sex scandals shocked the country last year was a proposal to erect a monument in Dublin to all the youths abused for decades at schools and orphanages run by religious orders that looked the other way. The idea, proposed by the government’s Ryan report last May, won so much support that half a million euros were earmarked for the project. The government appointed a group to consider what the Irish Times called “the most difficult public art commission in the history of the state.”
Our photographers in Haiti have produced many sad images of the widespread death and destruction from Tuesday’s massive earthquake, some of which are collected in a slideshow here. Following are shots of the Roman Catholic cathedral in Port-au-Prince in ruins. Among the dead in the quake was Archbishop Joseph Serge Miot, who the Vatican daily L’Osservatore Romano reported was found lifeless “under the rubble of the archbishop’s residence.”