Cyclone Winston slams Fiji


The Southern Hemisphere’s strongest storm in recorded history smashed the islands of Fiji over the weekend. Cyclone Winston, a Category 5 storm, hit the islands with estimated sustained winds of nearly 300 kilometers per hour (185 miles per hour). Most of Fiji remains without power, and the

Fiji Broadcasting Corporation

reported at least 21 people died and four are still missing.

According to Weather Underground, only 190-mph Super Typhoon Haiyan has been rated stronger in world history. Haiyan hit the central Philippines in November 2013.

Kafoa Muaror, lifetime Fiji resident and superintendent of the Fiji District, has made contact with several pastors who are okay, but several islands remain unreachable. Leaders from the Asia-Pacific Region are still attempting to contact Daniel Latu, who pastors the Church of the Nazarene in Ba, one of the hardest hit areas. Latu is also the South Pacific Field Nazarene Youth International coordinator.

Kafoa Muaror

The Church of the Nazarene began ministering in Fiji in 1995, and there are now more than 1,600 members and 49 churches.

Muaror, who also serves as vice chair of the denomination’s General Board, said his family watched the Sunday morning sun rise across a “war zone” following a night of winds “like they’ve never ever seen before.” The Muaror family made it through the night unharmed.

Muaror is trying to assess the status of the district despite trees being down and the nation in a state of emergency and shock. Full curfew is in effect with only emergency vehicles on the roads until further notice. He is still trying to make initial contact with pastors in the west and north, where reports state the storm hit the hardest.

All Nazarene pastors have been asked to gather at the district headquarters February 23 to bring assessments and begin developing a coordinated response. Field, regional, and global

Nazarene Compassionate Ministries

team members are also preparing response strategies.

CARE Australia reported the storm also caused severe damage to houses and crops in Tonga, another island nation that lies to the southeast of Fiji.

World Mission Communications Special Report - Fiji - Cyclone Winston Update fromAsia-Pacific Nazarene on Vimeo.

How to help


Pray for church leaders and disaster response efforts. Pray for access to food and safe water on the islands. Pray for those grieving the loss of loved ones, vulnerable children and families, and churches working to meet the needs in their communities.


Churches and individuals around the world can support disaster response efforts by giving to

Nazarene Compassionate Ministries

’ Fiji Cyclone Disaster Relief Fund by

clicking here

. Donations will be used to meet immediate needs, including water, food, and shelter, as well as long-term recovery and rebuilding efforts.

To send donations by mail:

In the U.S., make checks payable to "General Treasurer" and send them to:

Global Treasury Services

Church of the Nazarene

P.O. Box 843116

Kansas City, MO 64184-3116

Be sure to put 125914 in the Memo area.

In Canada, make checks payable to "Church of the Nazarene Canada" and send them to:

Church of the Nazarene Canada

20 Regan Road, Unit 9

Brampton, Ontario L7A 1C3

Be sure to put 125914 in the Memo area.

For any other country, give through your local church or district, designating your gift to the Fiji Cyclone Disaster Relief Fund.


Church of the Nazarene Asia-Pacific Region