Update from the

Philippines


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Gods love in action

 
When Super Typhoon Yolanda hit the Philippines in November 2013 the damage was catastrophic. Meteorologists said that the strength of the winds made it one of the 4 most powerful typhoons ever recorded. For the small Filipino island of Bantayan the effect was devastating with many houses which were still made of traditional timber and matting destroyed as well as the traditional outrigger fishing boats.
 
boats1The Newfrontiers family of churches responded immediately and various churches have donated money to our Newfrontiers church in Manila (House of Grace Church - HOGC) to provide aid. One of the church members, Danny’s, family lives in a village on Bantayan island and needed support following the typhoon. Peter Brooks, the House of Grace leadership team and I had the privilege of visiting this village last week to see firsthand the initial work done to help.
 
We arrived to find an amazing feast set out between some of the houses that had been rebuilt with the finance provided. It was a brilliant, festive time with fish, crabs and prawns all freshly caught and a huge roast pig. So far 2 concrete houses have been built with 15 more still to be done as well as other houses reroofed.
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Heading down the trail to the beach we saw a couple of boats that are still being built and then saw the amazing sight of 61 new fishing boats all white and green and named Newfrontiers. Fishing is the main livelihood and all the boats had been destroyed so being able to replace them (and in fact increase the number of boats) has a huge effect on the village.
 
It was a real joy to be able to present certificates of ownership to each fisherman for their boats. The boats vary in size with some larger ones having small motors and carrying 5 or 6 people. There was a real atmosphere of thankfulness and Eden (team leader of HOGC) was able to speak and give glory to God for His provision.
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We then thankfully moved into the shade and had an informal meeting with the village discussing their ongoing needs and how we could help with the money that has been donated. The first need is more fishing nets and then further houses that need to be rebuilt.
 
We are also very excited that Danny is looking to move back to the village from Manila and is feeling God call him to start a Bible study in his new house. Please keep praying for real Gospel advance as Gods love is poured out through the practical help being shown.



 
Mike Irving, 23/05/2014