Missionaries safe; 50 members' homes damaged following Taiwan temblor

TAIPEI, Taiwan — All missionaries are safe and accounted for and most members were reported as safe after a powerful earthquake struck this city Sept. 21, killing more than 2,000 people and destroying hundreds of homes.

Estimated at a magnitude of 7.6, the quake's epicenter was 90 miles south of Taipei and hit in the early morning hours while most of the 24,000 Church members in the country were sleeping.

No missionaries in the Taiwan Taipei, Taiwan Taichung and the Taiwan Kaohsiung missions were injured during the disaster — in which, according to news reports, 2,003 people died, more than 4,000 were injured and almost 3,000 were believed to be trapped in rubble.

According to a press release from the Church's Public Affairs Department, three Church members were injured during the earthquake. The homes of at least 50 member families were seriously damaged or destroyed.

However, there were no reports of damage to Church property, including the temple. Three meetinghouses were used as emergency shelters.

Local Church relief efforts in Taiwan include distribution of generators, bottled water, sanitation supplies and food.

A more detailed report of the disaster, and the Church members it affected, is planned for the Oct. 4 issue of the Church News.

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