By: Priscila Baracho, South American Division, and Adventist Review, courtesy Adventist Review

At 8:00 p.m. on December 17, 2018, Suelen was at her home in Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil, with her husband, her two daughters, her brother, and her mother. While watching TV, she began to hear shouts coming from outside. First she thought it was a fight, but soon the family discovered that many houses in the neighborhood were on fire.

“My first reaction was to run away with our children,” Suelen told Adventist volunteers a day later. She looked exhausted after a sleepless night. Diana Mota lived in one of the wooden houses that caught fire. Seven other family members were living with her. They only had time to grab a small bag with their personal identification and a few personal items before the house burned to the ground.

Most victims of the fire had only time to take a small bag with documents and a few personal items. Nothing remained of the burned houses. Across the Educandos neighborhood in Manaus, 600 families had a similar ordeal that night, losing almost everything in the fire.

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