Japanese reconstruction minister Ryu Matsumoto resigned from his post eight days into the job after offending local earthquake and tsunami victims in the northern region of Japan.
His resignation is a setback to Prime Minister Naoto Kan who is dealing with decreasing approval ratings and is already struggling to pass a bill to fund Japan’s largest reconstruction effort since World War II.
Matsumoto’s resignation came after a TV station aired footage of him acting insensitive to Yoshihiro Murai, the governor of the tsunami devastated region of Miygai. Murai showed up late to a meeting with the reconstruction minister. more >>
A 6.7-magnitude earthquake off of Japan's pacific coast struck at about 21:50 UTC or early Thursday in Japan.
A tsunami warning was quickly issued due to the quake but later canceled about an hour later.
Japanese and U.S. meteorologist agencies detected the earthquake and located the epicenter to be about 330 miles (530 km) north-east of Tokyo. more >>
When things go wrong – such as a loved one dying, a company laying off its workers or a natural disaster destroying everything – the typical response is to ask why. Why did this happen to me? Why did God let this happen? Why didn't God answer my prayers?
After experiencing tragedy in his own life, Adam Hamilton, senior pastor of United Methodist Church of the Resurrection in Leawood, Kansas, has made a career out of helping hurting people find the answers.
In his new book, Why? Making Sense of God's Will, Hamilton says that bad things do not happen because it is God's will, or because it is punishment for unacknowledged sin. more >>
Biola University and half-Japanese singer Judith Hill, who performed at Michael Jackson’s memorial services, will team up Thursday for a benefit concert for Japan earthquake victims.
Hill, an alumna of the southern California Christian school, had already planned on performing at the free concert to celebrate Women’s History month. But she decided to refocus the concert to raise funds for Japan upon hearing news that the country her mother was born in was devastated by a 9.0-magnitude earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear crisis. Hill’s father is African-American.
The R&B singer shared with The Christian Post on Tuesday, “A lot of people reached out to me and showed their concern for my family. I'm a big part of the Japanese community and it’s really hard for me because emotionally it's really close to home so this is different from any other charity benefit disaster situations that have happened. I'm very much involved in doing anything I can to help the community.” more >>
Japan’s Emperor Akihito on Wednesday expressed deep concern over the nation’s escalating nuclear crisis and said he was praying for the safety of people.
It was the first time in the history of Japan that the emperor addressed his nation on television during a crisis, according to the country’s Imperial Household Agency. Akihito, 77, told the public that he was “deeply worried” about the nuclear crisis, which escalated to the point that plant workers had to be temporarily evacuated on Wednesday.
“The number of people killed is increasing day by day and we do not know how many people have fallen victim,” Akihito said. more >>
Japan tsunami survivors are living one day to the next in fear after facing three nuclear power plant explosions, scarcity of food, drinking water, and shelter despite freezing temperatures.
Overall, survivors of Japan’s earthquake and tsunami seem calm, but “the smell of fear hangs heavy in the air,” according to the Operation Blessing disaster relief team on the ground. Operation Blessing says it is the first U.S. non-governmental organization to arrive in Japan and partner with CRASH (Christian Relief Assistance Support & Hope), a consortium of churches of mostly American missionaries living in Japan.
Beginning Tuesday, relief workers with CRASH will distribute clean drinking water, one of the most critical needs right now. more >>