God’s Word: Relief for the soul

Typhoons, flash floods, volcanic eruptions… these are just a few of the calamities that have struck the Philippines, adding to the increasing crises that the present government is facing. But life has been made more bearable for most of the calamity victims because of the hope shared by people who are themselves the living translation of God’s Word through their care, love and generosity. Two of the events in this article are testimonies God’s Word shared through actions.

ALCALA, PANGASINAN

On July 4, 2001, Typhoon Feria (International name: UTOR) hit Philippine shores. It slashed across the eastern coast of the country, unleashing its fury on the northern provinces of the country, tearing down bridges, flooding residential districts, ruining hectares of crops ready for harvest, isolating entire cities, but worse of all, taking innocent lives from their loved ones. In the aftermath of the storm, authorities pegged the estimated damage to infrastructure and agriculture at P1.59 billion. Almost 1 million people were displaced, and at least 128 lives lost. In all this devastation, the Philippine Bible Society responded in one such area affected by the storm.

In the early hours of July 5, while most Filipinos were safely and cozily snuggled under their bed covers inside their homes while Feria blew its fiercest, some 500 families in a remote town in Pangasinan were struggling to keep themselves alive. Comfort was far from being attained as the waters coming from the nearby Agno river threatened to wash out their homes. Due to the continuous downpour brought by the exiting typhoon plus a sudden release of all the gates of a dam upstream, the river inundated causing the dike along its banks to collapse sending a torrent of water coming from the provinces of La Union and Benguet towards the once-acclaimed most beautiful barangay in Alcala – Barangay Caranglaan – and the nearby barangays.

People were caught off-guard. As one mother related, nobody expected the rapid rise of water which took only minutes. Those who lived in less-sturdy houses were awake throughout the night, not knowing when the tide will carry them away, houses and all.

During the flood, ten people–eight of whom were children–died, while seventeen others were injured when the current carried them some distance away from their homes. Virginia Galletos, an elderly woman in Caranglaan, and her grandson were two of those who survived. They were found clinging to a bamboo pole about a kilometer away from their barangay. Her 45-year-old daughter, however, drowned.

“Nothing’s left for us… my house, our clothes… they’re all gone,” Mrs. Galletos lamented. The same calamity happened to them in early 1990s, but it was nothing compared to the destruction brought by the recent flash flood. She could not believe that this would happen to her in her old age.

Add Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

I am a Bible Ambassador because I believe that the Bible can help people a lot. And knowing the Bible, people come in touch with the Lord Jesus Christ.

Most Rev. Broderick Pabillo, D.D.
Most Rev. Broderick Pabillo, D.D.Apostolic Administrator, Achdiocese of Manila

Gusto kong makipag-fellowship sa kanila, masaya sa Philippine Bible Society kapag may mga (membership) meetings.  Gusto ko rin madagdagan knowledge ko... yung opportunity makapag.distribute ng Biblia sa maraming tao at magamit ako ng Panginoon. Pangatlo ay yung ma.bless din ako and be a blessing to many people.

Ptra. Dolores “Loy” Fulgencio
Ptra. Dolores "Loy" FulgencioAnnual PBS Member

It's an honor and a privilege for me to support the Philippine Bible Society - to reach out to the unreachable people by giving Bibles not only in the Philippines but the whole world.

Ptra. Nina Vergara
Ptra. Nina VergaraAnnual PBS Member

“It is a blessing to be able to support our local churches in need of Bibles and Bible study programs. It is our hope that they not only grow in terms of membership but also have the heart to extend spiritual help to others, just like how they have received help.”

Ptr. Callum TabadaUCCP Cosmopolitan Administrative Pastor (AACP benefactor)

“We are thankful since each individual now has a Bible. Our members will no longer have a hard time reading. Thank you also for the discipleship materials for these will help all in getting to know Jesus and to know how to be a better Christian.”

Ptr. Eric BulanteChurch Pastor, Shepherd's Church in Hills of Zion, Talim Island (AACP beneficiary)

“Philippine Bible Society organizes trainings that really respond to the needs of people who are suffering.
It has well-equipped leaders who facilitate trainings and workshops.
Its mission to reach out to Filipinos using God’s Word is fulfilled through its works.”

Miriam del RosarioExecutive director at The Birthright Educators Foundation

“I praise and thank our Almighty God that, through PBS, I now own a Poimen version of MBB (Magandang Balita Biblia) in the national language of the Philippines – Tagalog.
Knowing Matthew 10:32-33, I read and study the Bible so that I will not be dismayed when the Lord Jesus Christ comes. Life is too short compared with the promise of eternal life in God’s Kingdom.”

Jorge BianesLocal Church Elder at LJOR Unified Commonwealth

I think this is very helpful to every readers. The word of the Lord are the food of our soul which we always need every minute of our life. I dont often read the Bible but everytime i open it, God was always like in front of me and speaking as what is something i'm just needing to hear. He speaks to me and i can feel it. A million thanks to You my Lord.

CrisTin Bocar AtregenioHousewife, Stay-at-home parent

I love the ministry of the Philippine Bible Society in sharing the Word to the world. God bless PBS!

Ganni BanzueloScripture Marketing Officer at Philippine Bible Society