A powerful 7.1 earthquake, 20 miles west of Christchurch, early Saturday morning caused widespread damage, closed the Christchurch earthquake, but there was no immediate reports of fatalities.  The quake was felt as a long, rolling motion that lasted 40 seconds.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints reported that it is assessing the needs of those impacted by the quake.

In response to news media inquiries regarding the well-being of Latter-day Saint missionaries, the Church has confirmed that all missionaries in the area are safe and accounted for.