The alarming situation with forest fires in Portugal has become very worrying in recent days. In 2017 the OSMTHU has closely followed the tragedy that struck various parts of the country, claiming lives and incinerating vast areas of forests in the Templar regions north of the Tagus river and in the historic Pinewood of Leiria.
This year, the Commandery of Lisbon – Chagas Hill and the Commandery of Laccobriga (based in Lagos, just 25 miles from the main area being consumed at this very moment in the Algarve province) have already got involved with a few volunteers in support of those who struggle to extinguish the alarming threat on the ground. However, the weather is unpredictable and the past has taught us how the situation can change in a heart beat.
We then ask all Templar Globe readers who wish to support the efforts being made on the ground by our team, that include the donation and transport of supplies, water, food and medicines, to make a donation using the following account of the Commandery:
IBAN: PT50 0193 0000 1050 1984 5524 5
All help, regardless of size, is needed and appreciated.
Please, if you donate, send us an email with your name and contacts to firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can acknowledge your contribution and send you the final REPORT ON THE FIRE APPEAL by September 1st with details on donations and use of proceeds.
Please, pray for us.
For any other information, please contact:
Fr+ José Miguel da Fabiana, Coordination of Operations
IN THE MEDIA
UPDATE August 7, 22:42
A new car with supplies was dispatched to the theater of operations. The logistic coordination centre of the Order is located in the Headquarters of the Firefighters of Portimão. Ask for João Pedro Silva.
Tomorrow, August 8, Commander Victor Varela Martins will be available along the morning and early afternoon to accept bottled water, energy bars and medicines as he travels from Madrid, Toledo, Talavera de lá Reina, Mérida and Badajoz to Évora. He’s expected to meet the Commanders of Sintra and Arraiolos in Évora at 18:00. If you wish to meet them, you can get in touch with Commander Victor by phone on: +351.93.701.78.36
UPDATE August 7, 23:35
Arriving at the theater of operations is a desolating experience:
“Fiery sparks fall from the sky. The road side catches fire instantly. There are hundreds of small burning spots everywhere. Fire locations are 100 times more in number than the available means. It’s an uneven fight. All that remains is to defend and resist. God help us.”
(…) “We have just given a cell phone to a poor unprotected person who lives near the fire line who had no way of contacting his family. There are many ways to be of help.” (Fr+ João Pedro Silva, KTJ)
UPDATE August 8, 06:47
New report from the theater of operations:
“We safely finished our mission. We spent the night distributing food and water. The situation seems calmer, a good change from the chaos at 11pm. There was a great calm at dawn, the wind was very strong but the temperatures have dropped drastically. We hope the won’t be any new fires throughout the day. ” (Fr + João Pedro Silva, KTJ)
Fr+ João Pedro Silva, KTJ and Brother Fernando Miranda
UPDATE August 8, 12:03
New report from the theater of operations:
“We left the front at 7am convinced that the problem was finally over. Unfortunately, there is news of intense resurfacing and a new front of fire. It’s the wind. The situation is infernal. The temperature at dawn has been around 12 degrees, so that is not the main cause. It’s an endless nightmare. Tonight I saw myself multiple spontaneous ignitions, out of nowhere, at the same time and close to me. It looks like mushrooms of fire popping up from the ground. It was not arson. They were not projections from ongoing flames. I don’t know what it is, but it seems to be alive. Any explanation we may have on this subject is pure speculation. (Fr + João Pedro Silva, KTJ)
UPDATE August 8, 12:05
After departing on his journey from Madrid, the Commander of Lagos, Victor Varela Martins, arrives in Toledo where he collects product donations coordinated with our friends of the Sigillum Templi Group (special thanks to Victor Alfonso Padilla Nieto).
UPDATE August 8, 12:30
Fr+ Jorge Amador, KTJ shares photos of the fight against the flames last night and this morning.
UPDATE August 8, 13:19
Commander Paulo Valente of Sintra confirms that he has collected product donations in Elvas.
UPDATE August 8, 14:30
Commanders Paulo Valente of Sintra and Rui Herdadinha of Arraiolos begin operations to collect product donations at the logistics point selected in Évora.
UPDATE August 8, 18:00
Commander Victor Varela Martins joins the team already in Évora to prepare the cargo and startthe journey to Silves/Portimão.
UPDATE August 8, 18:43
Fire in Enxerim, at the gates of Silves. The fire progressed through several hills from the Odelouca Dam (+ 30km away).
UPDATE August 8, 20:03
Request of the Commander of Lagos:
“Brother Rui Herdadinha and I are on our way to the Silves Firefighters Station with a van full of goods to deliver. Anyone available to help with the load ??? We will arrive around 9pm.” (Fr + Victor Varela Martins, KCTJ)
UPDATE August 8, 21:50
Arrival at Silves Firefighters Station and unloading the goods.
UPDATE August 8, 23:02
The Commander of Arraiolos Rui Herdadinha gives a live interview to Antena 1 national radio.
UPDATE August 9, 00:00
The Order wishes to thank all the Brothers and Sisters who have shown their strength, imagining, organizing and rolling out this short operation, putting on the ground in record time. It should be noted that everyone returned home safely and without incidents. The way our social networks were activated, namely Facebook groups of the Order and of our Brothers and friends from all over the world, allowed us all to have the opportunity to participate and contribute to the success, from the rear to the theater of operations itself. I believe this is a first, both in extension and interaction in the contemporary the Templar world, which shows how relevan the Order still is today if we’re ready and willing.
To all, our deep “thank you”.
Luis de Matos
Prior General of Portugal
Chancellor of the OSMTHU
Coordination of Operations (in different moments):
Fr+ Paulo Valente, KCTJ
Fr+ Victor Varela Martins, KCTJ
Fr+ Rui Herdadinha, KCTJ
Fr+ João Pedro Silva, KTJ
Fr+ Miguel da Fabiana, KTJ
D+ Catarina Silva, DTJ
Fr+ Jorge Amador, KTJ
Fr+ Filipe Silva, KTJ
D+ Paula Valente, DTJ
Fr+ Pedro Bernardo, KTJ
Sister Ana Martins
Brother Fernando Miranda
Brother Filipe Beja Simões
Brother Hugo Guerreiro
Brother Luís Neto
Brother Paulo Menegucci
Brother Tiago Sério
Postulant Carlos Walcher
Postulant Luis Almeida
Arsénio Miguel Condaça Lérias
David Manuel Freitas Chambel
Diogo José Macau Soares
Élsio José Campaniço Leocádio
Emanuel José Semedo Piteira
Fábio Manuel Tavares Mendes
Francisco Manuel Carmo Gemito
José Manuel Da Silva Rosado
Murillo Henrique Vieira da Silva
Miguel Ângelo Barbosa Catambas
Ruben Filipe Letras Vermelho
Fr+ Luis Fonseca, KCTJ
Fr+ Luis de Matos, KGCTJ
Irmão José Carlos Mateus
A. J. Salvadinha II, Lda.
Alma de Muralha
Diana Peças Lda
Fr+ Francisco Miguel Fernandez, OSMTH – Toledo
Hidro Portugal Lda
Land Rover Évora
Victor Alfonso Padilla Nieto
Fr+ Victor Mayenco