News / Asia

Philippine Church Near DC Prays for Homeland

Philippine Church Near DC Prays for Homelandi
|| 0:00:00
...  
🔇
X
Ira Mellman
November 11, 2013 4:13 AM
Alvenia Ropeta of the Philippine International Bible Church in Laytonsville, Maryland prays for her family and homeland.
Alvenia Ropeta of the Philippine International Bible Church in Laytonsville, Maryland prays for her family and homeland.
Ira Mellman
As the rescue efforts continue in the aftermath of the typhoon in the Philippines, expatriates across the globe are mobilizing efforts to help.
 
A typical case is that of the Philippine International Bible Church in Laytonsville, Maryland, not far from Washington, DC, where around 50 churchgoers gathered following their pastor's call for help. Pastor Nardito Manalang suggested each parishioner place extra money into collection envelopes passed among the congregants to raise funds for those affected.
 
"This is not the first time that this is happening. All of us were saddened and shocked actually by the impact of it. Today, we took a special offering to give people a chance to write a second check - a separate envelope designated just for this… as part of our international involvement. The name of our church is ‘international.’ We feel we are obligated to the world and share its pain and sorrow as well as its joy," said Manalang.
 
Among those gathered at the church, several members had relatives, some of them very close relatives, who live in the Philippines and are in the path of the storm. One of them is Alvenia Ropeta.

Alvenia Ropeta of the Philippine International Bible Church prays for her family - Part 2i
|| 0:00:00
...  
🔇
X
Ira Mellman
November 11, 2013 4:21 AM
Alvenia Ropeta of the Philippine International Bible Church in Laytonsville, Maryland prays for her family and homeland - Part 2

"My 2-year-old son, Luke Jefferson Ropeta… He is with my sister-in-law in Banistawtacloben. It's in Fatima Village close to Robinson Mall. Since the typhoon, I have not heard anything. I have not had any communication with them. I can't reach them and I don't know if they really have survived. I'm trying to find out… [looking on] Facebook and everything like that [to see] if their name would appear, but I have not heard anything,” said Ropeta.
 
Ropeta said that her relatives are likely struggling to get even the most basic things.
“I believe the area that was flattened was very close to my houses, or where we lived. I don't know if they have like a roof over their head, clothes or if they have water to drink, or if they have food. So those are the primary needs they can survive,” said Ropeta.
“It is beyond explanation. It is very overwhelming. I feel numb right now. My tears just run down my eyes. I don't know how to explain it. It's just very painful just to imagine the suffering. My loved ones and all of the Filipinos who are affected by the typhoon they are experiencing right now. It's just beyond my imagination,” she continued.
 
Despite everything, Ropeta also expressed feelings of hope and implored her family to remain strong.

“Just be still. Just be still and hang in there. That's what I'm exactly doing over here. I'm putting all of my trust and faith that God is in control and He will make sure that we will get through all of these trials and calamities, that He will be taking care of us. And give Luke my warmest hug and kiss him for me," said Ropeta.
It is that faith, the cornerstone of the church, that remains the central message of Pastor Manalang.

"We will do the best that we can to share our love and comfort and encouragement to these, our people who have been affected. And then, of course, reassure them we are in this boat together. We will walk together through it. Remember, there is more to God and belief in the Lord beyond what our senses can see and interpret and understand," said Manalang.

Alvenia Ropeta of the Philippine International Bible Church prays for her family - Part 3i
|| 0:00:00
...  
🔇
X
Ira Mellman
November 11, 2013 4:41 AM
Alvenia Ropeta of the Philippine International Bible Church in Laytonsville, Maryland prays for her family and homeland - Part 3

You May Like

Video One Year After Thai Coup, No End in Sight for Military Rule

Since carrying out the May 22, 2014 coup, the general has retired from the military but is still firmly in charge More

Goodbye, New York

This is what the fastest-growing big cities in America have in common More

Job-Seeking Bangladeshis Risk Lives to Find Work

The number of Bangladeshi migrants on smugglers’ boats bound for Southeast Asian countries has soared in the past two years More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthroughi
X
May 22, 2015 10:23 AM
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthrough

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Europe Follows US Lead in Tackling ‘Conflict Minerals’

Metals mined from conflict zones in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo are often sold by warlords to buy weapons. This week European lawmakers voted to force manufacturers to prove that their supply chains are not inadvertently fueling conflicts and human rights abuses. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Class Tackles Questions of Race, Discrimination

Unrest in some U.S. cities is more than just a trending news item at Ladue Middle School in St. Louis, Missouri. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, it’s a focus of a multicultural studies class engaging students in wide-ranging discussions about racial tensions and police aggression.
Video

Video Mind-Controlled Prosthetics Are Getting Closer

Scientists and engineers are making substantial advances towards the ultimate goal in prosthetics – creation of limbs that can be controlled by the wearer’s mind. Thanks to sophisticated sensors capable of picking up the brain’s signals, an amputee in Iceland is literally bringing us one step closer to that goal. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Foreign Troops Depart

As international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, and many foreign aid groups follow, Afghans are grappling with how the exodus will affect the country's fragile economy. Ayesha Tanzeem reports from the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Video

Video Poverty, Ignorance Force Underage Girls Into Marriage

The recent marriage of a 17-year old Chechen girl to a local police chief who was 30 years older and already had a wife caused an outcry in Russia and beyond. The bride was reportedly forced to marry and her parents were intimidated into giving their consent. The union spotlighted yet again the plight of many underage girls in developing countries. Zlatica Hoke reports poverty, ignorance and fear are behind the practice, especially in Asia and Africa.
Video

Video South Korea Marks Gwangju Uprising Anniversary

South Korea this week marked the 35th anniversary of a protest that turned deadly. The Gwangju Uprising is credited with starting the country’s democratic revolution after it was violently quelled by South Korea’s former military rulers. But as Jason Strother reports, some observers worry that democracy has recently been eroded.
Video

Video California’s Water System Not Created To Handle Current Drought

The drought in California is moving into its fourth year. While the state's governor is mandating a reduction in urban water use, most of the water used in California is for agriculture. But both city dwellers and farmers are feeling the impact of the drought. Some experts say the state’s water system was not created to handle long periods of drought. Elizabeth Lee reports from Ventura County, an agricultural region just northwest of Los Angeles.
Video

Video How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth. Led by the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm, the work opens the door to recreate the huge herbivore, which last roamed the Earth 4,000 years ago. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble considers the science of de-extinction and its place on the planet
Video

Video Blind Boy Defines His Life with Music

Cole Moran was born blind. He also has cognitive delays and other birth defects. He has to learn everything by ear. Nevertheless, the 12-year-old has had an insatiable love for music since he was born. VOA’s June Soh introduces us to the young phenomenal harmonica player.

VOA Blogs