Pope John Paul II Sculpture

Juan Pablo II Sculpture by Rudy Girón

What’s the relationship between Santo Hermano Pedro de Betancourt and Pope John Paul II you might be asking?

Simple. Santo Hermano Pedro de Betancourt was beatified on June 22, 1980, and canonized on July 30, 2002 by Pope John Paul II. At the homily read by John Paul II in Guatemala City, on July 30, 2002 [source: Wikipedia]

The sculptures of Santo Hermano Pedro de Betancourt and Papa Juan Pablo II are only meters from each other which makes one believe the sculptures are commemorating the canonization of Peter of Saint Joseph Betancurt.

Guatemala’s 1976 Earthquake Ephemerides Aside: I was only an infant when Guatemala was struck by the strongest earthquake in about 100 years on February 4, 1976. I have since lived through several earthquakes in California and Mexico, yet the 1976 Guatemala’s quake remains the strongest seismic activity I experienced. The USGS even has it on their Historic Earthquakes page as follows:

The most destructive earthquake since 1917 struck Guatemala on February 4. The magnitude 7.5 quake was centered about 160 km northeast of Guatemala City. The death toll has reached more than 23,000, and thousands have been injured. Damage was extensive. Most adobe type structures in the outlying areas of Guatemala City were completely destroyed, leaving thousands homeless. Transportation was impeded by the many landslides occurring in the area. Food and water supplies were severely reduced. Some of the areas were without electricity and communication for days. The main shock has been followed by thousands of aftershocks, some of the larger ones causing additional loss of life and damage.

The USGS also has 115 photos of the damages caused by the February 4, 1976 Guatemala’s earthquake.

Wikipedia also has a page dedicated to the 1976 Guatemala earthquake:

The 1976 Guatemala earthquake struck on February 4, 1976 at 03:01:43 local time (09:01:43 UTC-6). It was a 7.5 Mw earthquake, centered in the Motagua Fault, about 160 km northeast of Guatemala City, Guatemala. The quake’s hypocenter was located at a depth of 5 km near the town of Los Amates in the department of Izabal.

Cities throughout the country suffered damage, and most adobe type houses in the outlying areas of Guatemala City were completely destroyed. The earthquake struck during the early morning (at 3:01 am, local time) when most people were asleep. This contributed to the high death toll of 23,000. Approximately 76,000 were injured, and many thousands left homeless. Some of areas went without electricity and communications for days. (… continue reading at Wikipedia)

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