PRAYER ALERT – Japan: new explosion at reactor

There was a new explosion at one of the reactors in Japan and reports are in that 2.7 meters of a rod are exposed.  They are not able, apparently, able to get enough water in to cool the rods.  Temperatures will rise.

At this point all the little details count, such as  after-shocks, human ingenuity.

Wind direction and force…

I pray that one of God’s holy angels will miraculously intervene.

May God’s will be done, but consider the awesome might of the least of angels, to whom even the cores of stars as nothing except insofar as they may please the Lord to burn.

I will, this evening, say a Mass asking God to intervene.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. thickmick says:

    Thanks Father. My Wife is from Japan and its comforting to know you’re on top of it. God’s will be done.

  2. All we can do here is pray.

  3. Maltese says:

    As I write, I’m praying to Our Lady of Akita.

  4. Flambeaux says:

    Just sang Compline. Heading to bed presently. Will pray our Family Rosary for the Japanese and for the Holy Father.
    Kyrie eleison.

  5. bgeorge77 says:

    The Roman Missal p1610 (Baronius Press):
    Commemoration in Time of Earthquake:
    Collect: Almighty, everlasting God, who dost look upon the earth and make it tremble, spare those who are afraid, and be merciful to those who pray to Thee: that we who fear Thine anger, which shaketh the foundations of the earth, may always experience Thy mercy, which healeth its commotions. Through our Lord…

    Secret: O God, who didst firmly establish the earth in its foundations, receive the offerings and prayers of Thy people, and taking away the dangers of earthquake, turn the scourges of Thy divine anger into healing remedies for mankind, that they who are of earth and shall return to earth, may by their holy conduct rejoice in becoming citizens of heaven. Through our Lord Jesus Christ…

  6. danielinnola says:

    St. Paul Miki and companions, Our Lady of Akita. Intercede for the people of Japan

  7. Thank you for the update and the gentle reminder to keep praying. [Nothing gentle was intended. PRAY!]

  8. Catholictothecore says:

    I’ve been praying the Rosary everyday since this natural disaster started last Friday. Fr. Z is right – all we can do is pray.

  9. Tornadoes and hurricanes spend themselves and dissipate, but earthquakes go on and on. What a Lent for the people of Japan.

  10. Lily says:

    My dad is in Tokyo right now. Thank you so much for your prayers.

  11. Massachusetts Catholic says:

    I remember reading a story about a group of Jesuits living in Japan during World War II. They were in range of the atomic bomb dropped on Nagasaki. None of the Jesuits was injured; none suffered any aftereffects of radiation. They attributed their protection to the Rosary, which they recited in obedience to the request of Our Lady of Fatima. With God, all things are possible.

  12. servusmariaen says:

    I pray through the intercession of the holy angels, Our lady of Akita, the holy martyrs of Japan and all the saints that miracle be wrought to spare a further disaster. May it bring about not only temporal help to the Japanese people but also their conversion through such a miracle.

  13. Tina in Ashburn says:

    This is a problem. Praying is in order, yes.

    Can I share some information that might add some comfort? These are notes from a “nuclear” family member that calmed me down a bit:

    “The term “meltdown” describes the melting of reactor core materials due to excessive heat within the core. ANY deformation of the materials could legitimately be called a meltdown, though the actual damage might only be a 1 cm bubbling of metal in one of the 100+ channels through which coolant flows. in an extreme scenario (ie-Chernobyl) the heat can become so out of control that the entire reactor core completely melts together becoming a heaping mass of nuclear fuel that then melts through the floor of the building.

    it’s worth pointing out that each primary containment has withstood the 4th largest earthquake in recorded world history, a 23 foot tsunami, several smaller tsunamis, a hydrogen gas explosion, the collapse of an outer superstructure, 2 earthquakes over magnitude 7, more than 30 earthquakes over magnitude 6, and more than 100 earthquakes over magnitude 5… all in the last 4 days. so I wouldn’t count on this containment failing because of a meltdown… that’s actually something the engineers PLAN for in their design!

    as long as the reactor vessel and primary containment stay intact, there will be no major release to the local environment/population. exposed/uncovered fuel rods means that water is not covering it, though it is all still contained. the lack of cooling [by the water] will cause a partial meltdown of reactor core materials, but again, not a huge issue for the public as long as the primary containment isn’t breached.

    two of the reactors have now suffered explosions that caused the containment building to collapse, at least partially, onto the primary containment. but no damage to the primary containment. ”

    May God send his heaviest angels to sit on the buildings.

  14. Margaret says:

    Offered up a somewhat unpleasant YMCA workout this morning for Japan. Still have to finish today’s Rosary, so that goes up too… Lord, please draw beautiful apostolic fruits out of this horror.

  15. Mike says:

    @ Massachusetts Catholic – Fr. Pedro Arrupe (former Superior General of the Jesuits) wrote about when his survival of the atomic bomb while he was at (I think) a novitiate. They saw the blast and then felt the shockwave. He talks about the make-shift hospital they set up to treat those from the city. Its an amazing story.

  16. Ellen says:

    I’ve prayed and asked the intercession of the Japanese Martyrs, Our Lady of Akita and St. Maximillian Kolbe. I take most of the media reports about the nuclear disaster with a large grain of salt. While I don’t discount the danger, when the press sees the word nuclear, they blow up.

  17. albizzi says:

    It is strange to wonder about the curse Japan is undergoing by nuclear power since WWII:
    Hiroshima, Nagasaki, and now Fukushima.
    Yes Mass. Catholic, you are right: Praying the Rosary is the best shield against the radiations. Fr Aruppe could witness this, and nobody among the best scientists of America could explain this prodigy.
    If all the Japan people could knee and pray the Rosary, certainly this ordeal would be stopped

  18. robtbrown says:

    Tina in Ashburn,

    Thanks for the sane comments. More and more I’m less and less enthralled by the news media’s inclination toward sensationalism. We are treated to highly charged words like “Meltdown!”, joined to various low key qualifiers like “could” or “might”.

  19. David Homoney says:

    Prayer is definately in order, but let’s put one other thing into perspective. The main containment unit is rated to 5000 degrees. In a meltdown the temp of material could rise to just over 3000 degrees. This means that even if a meltdown occurs it will not get past the main containment unit. I think people have an idea that if a meltdown occurs that these things go off like a nuclear bomb, but they do not. This is not bomb grade material, nor is it explosive. There is no risk of fission or fusion here. So let’s all keep this in mind. Remember Chernobyl killed, eventually, 4000 people. The other great “disaster” from the media was 3 Mile Island. Does anybody remember the death count from that “disaster”? If you guessed 0, none, nada, zip, or nil you would be correct.

    The news media is in search of a disaster, and I guess all those that died in the earthquake and Tsunami don’t matter much. There is also an anti-nuke agenda here as you can see from our slimy politicos rushing to use this for their own ideas.

    So, let’s pray for the people of Japan. Let us pray that they can fix the problems with their nukes. Let’s pray that God gives them the strength to handle the massive rebuilding effort. Let’s pray that God provides the food and water they will need. Let’s pray Japan comes back to God. Finally, let’s pray that hysteria doesn’t grip the world over a nuclear disaster that isn’t likely to happen. May God bless the Japanese, and may He add some sanity to the news media.

  20. irishgirl says:

    Praying, through the intercession of Our Lady of Akita, St. Philip of Jesus, St. Paul Miki and his companions, and St. Maxmilian Kolbe.
    ‘May God send His heaviest angels to sit on the buildings’-that’s a good one, Tina in Ashburn! Amen to that! And thank you for the sane comments about the nuclear situation. I also get dismayed-as well as disgusted-by the media’s tendency to sensationalize. That’s one reason why I don’t have TV now.

  21. Bornacatholic says:

    I too have been praying for the people of Japan and at Daily Mass they have been singled-out in The Bidding prayer. That aside, it strikes me that it is ever true that, like King David said, “There is one step between me and death.”

    I am prolly the only one who thinks this way but it seems to me that Apocalypse 7:2 is relevant here as it would be in each and every case of Judgment delayed (A typical mundane day or a day filled with great blessings) and individual or collective disaster. When I read Chapter 7, I imagine that Verse 2 describes an every day event; that either Jesus, or an Angel of the highest orders, signals the Four Angels to refrain from hurting the Earth and the Seas until the servants of God have been sealed in their foreheads, but that, literally, every day, the four angels are there waiting to do the bidding of The Lord who, daily, decides to either Bind or Loose those Four Angels.

    Such thoughts are humbling in the sense of understanding how little control over events we have and how, literally, we are totally dependent upon God, but such thoughts are also exalting in that Our Lord spares us, daily, individually and collectively, until the appointed day of our Judgement. Such patience with we sinful men is astonishing.

    But, all of this is just amateurish speculation on my part I realise and I didn’t write it to offend anyone but to see if anyone else has similar thoughts.

  22. All I ask for here are prayers.


  23. Bornacatholic says:

    Sorry, Father. The mention of Angels set me to thinking about how they move the planets etc and I was wondering if others thought the same way. I won’t speculate. I will pray

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