(BNC) — World English Institute administrator Lee Allen posted a notice to the ministry’s teachers on the website about the devastation Hurricane Matthew caused in Haiti and its impact on the hundreds of online students there.

“Haiti has been devastated by Hurricane Matthew. Lives have been lost. Please pray fervently with your families for this special country of God’s people. We have many brothers and sisters in Christ there,” he wrote.

In addition, he said that WEI has many students that their teachers are concerned about. Haiti has the second largest population of WEI students being taught throughout the world.

He reminded the teachers that, because of the devastation, it may be days and weeks before they hear from students.

“If you have students in Haiti, please take time today to email them and share that they are in our many thoughts and prayers! Encourage them! I know this had to be a very scary time for them! God be with them during this very difficult time in their lives!” he wrote.

“We have 682 Haiti students studying with WEI teachers since January 1, 2016. Numbers are increasing every day. 543 students began studies with WEI during 2015,” Lee told BNC.

WEI has students in 187 countries, teaching English through the use of the Bible. The ministry makes frequent appeals for more teachers.

As the hurricane’s path turns north, the state of Florida is bracing for the worst in what some are calling the potential for “historic damage.”

UPATE: WEI worker Jan Towell noted that one teacher wrote “to her 100+ students in Haiti and heard back from a dozen or so who say they’re OK, but have lost their homes and have no food.”

Randal and his wife Vicki have lived and worked in Brazil since Nov. 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and four grandchildren. He likes to read novels in his back-porch hammock. http://randal.us