‘It Just Breaks My Heart’

Winter is approaching in northern Japan. Millions who lost their homes in the March tsunami now have another worry: radiation that’s been spewing from their damaged nuclear plant. The health risks aren’t stopping Sister Kathleen Reiley. She fears what will happen if she doesn’t volunteer.

Sr. Kathleen Reiley ministers among Japanese children with long-term illnesses.

“I work with children with cancer and it just breaks my heart to think how many more children are threatened with getting cancer because of this accident,” says the Maryknoll Sister who is based south of the where an earthquake caused the massive tsunami here only months ago.

Because of the widespread radiation, officials near the Fukushima nuclear plant have discouraged visitors from entering the area. In this month’s Maryknoll Sisters blog post from Japan, read why Sister Kathleen is volunteering in the region anyway.

Those most at risk from the contaminated soil are people under 40 years of age, though anyone can breathe the dangerous air. Families here are concerned for their small children. Children with cancer make up the special ministry of Sister Kathleen, a counselor who is prepared to take on Japan’s latest victims.