Philippines flooding claims members   Leave a comment

I know the First Presidency Message Is Out for the month of October, but I can’t help but share, and dedicate space here for these stories. When we think of our circumstances here in the States, we sometimes think our situations are worse than many many others across the world. May the Dear Lord bless all these people. Let us keep them… in our prayers.

Many members homeless after flooding caused by typhoon Ketsana
Published: Thursday, Oct. 1, 2009

Flooding triggered by typhoon Ketsana that devastated Manila andsurrounding areas Sept. 26 left 12 Church members reportedly among the deadand another 14 missing, according to a Church statement issued Sept.30.

Photo by Pasig Philippines Stake President Cirilo Laceste
Floodwaters surround the Pasig Philippines Stake center. Devastating floodsin the Manila, Philippines, area were the result of tropical stormKetsana on Sept. 26.

Among residents of the affected area, at least 246 died in the floodingand 38 were missing, according to reports at press time. About 400,000families — or nearly three million individuals — were impactedby the worst flooding metropolitan Manila has seen in more than 40 years.Ketsana hit the main Philippines island of Luzon.

Eleven members were reported dead in the Morong Philippines District andone in the Valenzuela Philippines Stake.
A total of 25 meetinghouses were flooded while 25 others served asevacuation centers to more than 300 people, including victims who are notmembers of the Church. It is feared the number of casualties will rise aspriesthood leaders receive more reports from previously isolatedplaces.

All full-time and couple missionaries were safe and accounted for. TheManila Philippines Temple was not affected. There was some damage to theManila Beehive Clothing and distributioncenter.

Photo courtesy Philippines public affairs
RaeDeanne Fajardo, left, and Sheryl Garcia, young single adults of theParanaque Philippines Stake, sort used clothes to be sent to floodvictims. 

In a 24-hour period, Ketsana (called Ondoy in the Philippines) dumpedmore than what is normally the average monthly rainfall in the area. About80 percent of the city of 15 million was flooded. Some areas hadfloodwaters as deep as 20 feet.

A day after the torrential rain, members of the Church, many gatheringafter sacrament meetings, pooled their resources to donate food, clothes,blankets and towels to those displaced by the floods.

Photo by Rae Deanne Fajardo
Missionariesand members of the Paranaque 4th Ward, Paranaque Philippines Stake,visit members’ homes a day after Ketsana battered the Philippinescapitol of Manila. 

Many of those donating have houses that were also flooded, but knowingthere were others whose houses were completely destroyed, they gatheredwhat was left and shared them with those in greater need. Some left theirflooded homes and cared for those sheltered in meetinghouses, or visitedfellow members’ homes to check on their condition.

The Church provided food, water, clothing, hygiene items and otherrelief supplies to victims of the flooding.
Outside Metro Manila, unaffected stakes and districts also sent help. Inthe northern province of Pangasinan, where typhoon Chan Hom made landfalllast May 7, members — many still living in makeshift houses orstaying with relatives — surprised their leaders by giving generousdonations.

Alaminos Philippines District President Porferio Balute Jr. said evenchildren gave their school allowance.
“Though we did not receive any instructions at that time, we feel thatwe have the obligation to help our needy brothers and sisters affected bytyphoon Ondoy in Metro Manila, following the Savior’s example,” he said.”The overwhelming response of our members is a humbling and learningexperience for us. Indeed, it doesn’t take a lot of wealth to helpothers.”

Rescue and relief operations had been hampered by floodwaters thatremained for days while damaged communication lines were unreliable.

Elder Benson Misalucha, Area Seventy and the Church’s Philippines Areawelfare manager, said: “We all need to realize that these are times when wecan exemplify the power of faith and prayers. No matter how difficultthings become, the gospel of Jesus Christ can see us through.”

Aside from the immediate need of those in evacuation centers, localChurch leaders and members are also planning for the longer-term needs ofcleaning up and helping provide shelter. Donations will also be made tovictims who are not members of the Church through non-governmentorganization partners.

Plainview Texas Branch; Lubbock Stake Announcements;

October 3rd :Saturday General Conference; 11:00 & 3:00
October 3rd :Saturday Priesthood Telecast 7:00pm

October 4th :Sunday General Conference; 11:00 & 3:00

October 7th :Leadership Training @ Stake Center

Posted October 2, 2009 by rexfordgbeardsleyjr in Uncategorized

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