29 November 2013
Thank you very much for the solidarity and spirit of communion that is very palpable, moving and touching that we are receiving from the Congregation and from all over. We continue to entrust our people and our country to the Lord as the work of rehabilitation and rebuilding is being done. May the Advent season be truly a time to wait, to heal, to restore, that the Lord may be welcomed in the hearts and homes of those who are especially lost, last and least.
Again, many thanks !
in grateful communion,
in grateful communion,
11 November 2013
Very dear Sisters,
Thank you very much for the messages of prayer and support and for the many expressions of solidarity and communion that we have all received from you at this time of devastation and great suffering for many of our people caused by the onslaught of typhoon ‘Yolanda,’ and not so long ago, by the earthquake that hit Bohol and Cebu, and other parts of the Visayas.
I was actually in Iloilo when the typhoon made the landfall last November 8, which prevented me from going back to Manila after the regional assembly in the Visayas and some meetings concerning our schools. Iloilo City itself was not as badly hit by the typhoon. Definitely, there were strong winds and rain ; many trees fell and blocked many roads. There was total blackout in the city and in other parts of Panay (Iloilo, Kalibo, Roxas, Antique) and no internet or cell phone connection the whole afternoon until late in the evening on that day.
Our sisters are all okay and there was no community that was adversely hit or affected, except that of our school in Passi, where the roof was blown away and the computers, classrooms got destroyed. However, some of the families of our teachers and staff were affected, both in Passi and Antique. The sisters in Antique have visited the areas and tried to find ways and means to help. As for Passi, the sisters in Iloilo were able to pass through (the other day, roads were still impassable due to flooding), visit and extend help to those who were affected, and are looking into ways to help rehabilitate, repair and reconstruct what has been damaged in the school. There is still no electricity in many parts the visayas (Antique, Passi, towns in the northern part of Iloilo, and of course in Tacloban and other nearby cities)
Traduction française de ce passage : Nos sœurs vont toutes bien et il n’y a pas de communauté qui ait été très touchée, sauf celui notre école de Passi, où le toit a été soufflé et les ordinateurs et salles de classe détruits. Cependant, certaines des familles de nos professeurs et le personnel ont été touchés, à la fois à Passi et Antique. Les sœurs d’Antique ont visité les zones et essayé de trouver les voies et moyens pour aider. Quant à Passi, les sœurs de Iloilo ont pu y aller (l’autre jour, les routes étaient encore impraticables à cause des inondations), pour visiter les gens et apporter de l’aide à ceux qui ont en ont besoin, et chercher les moyens d’aider à remettre en état, réparer et reconstruire ce qui a été endommagé dans l’école. Il n’y a toujours pas d’électricité dans de nombreuses régions des Visayas : Antique, Passi, villes qui sont dans la partie nord de Iloilo, et bien sûr à Tacloban et d’autres villes voisines.
I have also learned last night that Sr. Charlita’s sister, together with her sister’s husband and two kids, who are living in Bogo, Cebu City, had to transfer to a friend’s house because their house got destroyed. Sr. Charlita is now in contact with her sister and we’re also trying to extend some help to the family. As far as I know, no lives have been lost from among our family members or friends. But our hearts go out to those that have perished, especially those in tacloban and in other parts of the visayas. Little by little, these places can now be penetrated by land and at least makes the extension of help more accessible. But the sight and the condition bring so much sorrow, sadness and grief, as what you must also have seen on tv, internet, fb, etc.
Sr. Fe Emmanuel is now in Cebu, attending the meeting of the association of religious treasurers in the Philippines, with 3 other sisters who form part of our finance commission of our Province. While in Cebu, she is also taking the opportunity to network with other congregations and groups to find ways and means for donations, financial/ material to be distributed as soon as possible to stricken areas and to reach the people and communities that badly need them. Different religious associations are also organizing volunteers to go especially to Tacloban to help in the rehabilitation and healing of victims, etc..
I am now attending the Asia-Oceania Meeting of Religious in Tagaytay. This morning, it was Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle who opened the ceremony and celebrated the Holy Eucharist. In his homily, he spoke of what it means to be mystics and prophets of our times – to see, to hear to feel, and to experience the presence of God, especially in the poor and the suffering. He spoke specifically deep from the heart, and with much emotion, about those afflicted by the devastating calamities that have hit our country, and have challenged us to take practical ways and means to respond, to take action and at the same time continuing to abide and remain in the SOURCE of life, and of HOPE, in our LORD. In the midst of all that has beset us, truly, it is our faith that keeps us going, that helps to ‘rise again’ and move on…
Again, we thank you your acts of solidarity and union of prayers. We continue to enjoin you in praying with us and for us to beg the Lord to bless our land and our people and protect us from further onslaught of calamities. Amen.
In grateful and prayerful communion,
Sr.Sheryl and your Sisters from the Philippines-Thailand Province