With my Parish staff we have been contacting people, especially those by themselves, since then. We've been able to make some significant contacts for some folk. Some report no damage. Others have had TVs and family heirlooms broken, but everyone says "It's only stuff".
That's an important perspective to hold firmly to. We are remembering in prayer those south of here who have lost a lot more, including the families of those who died in Kaikoura and Mt Lyford; and are having a lot more vigourous aftershocks.
between midnight and 3am Libby and I made home and pets safe, checked the neighbours, then my parents. That's the order to do things. We did a scout round the homes of some of our oldies, and where lights were on asked after them. We checked staff were ok, and the state of the church. You'll be pleased to know it's standing, with no apparent damage other than some flower arrangements falling over, and a bit of old paint on the floor from the ceiling. We hope to have an engineer look over it today.
It was said by an early church leader around the year 400 that, while the Bible speaks to us, the Psalms speak for us. A particularly applicable Psalm is Psalm 46. The opening verses proclaim:
a very present[a] help in trouble.
2 Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change,
though the mountains shake in the heart of the sea;
Today Civil Defence are using the Nativity Centre as a drop in point, manned by Red Cross personell. if you want to use that, please do. Likewise if there is any other help you want that you think we may be able to help with call in, phone, or text.
Grace and peace be with you.