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Is Haiti Cursed?

haiti earthquakeIn the aftermath of the devastation in Haiti, Pat Robertson made international headlines by claiming that the country is cursed.  Robertson stated that the troubles in Haiti can be traced back to the time they “swore a pact with the devil” while fighting for their independence from France. World leaders and news outlets immediately denounced Robertson’s comments as inaccurate and insensitive in this time of tragedy.

Knee jerk reactions seem to abound on both sides. Perhaps a more reasoned analysis is needed.

It seems that what Robertson is really saying is that God is passing judgment on Haiti for its commitment to Voodoo. God is judging sin.  The bible clearly states that part of God’s dealing with the political systems of the world is to pass judgment on them. Further, God has and will continue to judge nations and cultures based on His Word and holiness. Finally, there will be a day when He judges all of the world and history. Everyone will stand before Him.

Even though Judaism, Christianity and Islam each have clear messages of final judgment and accountability, the world and its leaders reject the idea that it could ever actually happen. A Christian, however, cannot believe that God is a mere bystander in world events.

From most any viewpoint one must describe the recent earthquake in Haiti as a disaster. Some writers, even secular ones, have described the destruction in ‘biblical proportions.’ One need only review the last 10 years to recognize the truth of that view.

Haiti earthquakeHaiti is a caricature of political corruption and the catalog of natural disasters is mind-numbing.  In the last 10 years Haiti has suffered four tropical storms or hurricanes and four major floods each killing hundreds. A killer combination of geography, deforestation, shoddy building standards, poverty, an ill-prepared government, and heart-wrenching social ills keep this country in a near constant state of emergency.

This is the 15th disaster since 2001 in which the U.S. Agency for International Development has sent money and help to Haiti. Some 3,000 people have been killed and millions of people displaced in the disasters that preceded this week’s earthquake. Since the turn of this century the U.S. has sent more than $16 million in disaster aid to Haiti.

For this to be the deadliest quake on record, the death toll will have to top the 2004 Asian tsunami that killed more than 227,000 and a 1976 earthquake in China that killed 255,000. While early estimates on the death toll topped 500,000, it now seems likely to be much lower.

Helping Haiti

helping HaitiAt times like these people naturally want to help. Recent tales of corruption and mismanagement frighten people. Everyone wants to know their gifts are being used properly. I will be giving money through my local church that will be channeled through the Southern Baptist Convention. Click on the photo to give online.

I found a great post on How to Help Haiti that gives links and details for many worthwhile organizations that you can be confident in your giving. It also has links for Twitter and Facebook feeds giving up-to-the-minute details in Haiti.

The American Red Cross has a simple and unique plan.  Text the word Haiti to 90999  in order to donate $10.