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

Brutality Eroding IS Financial Support

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper says IS's penchant for publicizing beheadings, other brutal forms of punishment hurts group’s bottom line More

Studies: Climate Change a Factor in Disasters in Syria, California

Studies point to possibility of clear and present dangers from a threat often considered to be far in the future More

Video Afghan Refugees Complain of Harassment in Pakistan

Afghan officials and human rights organizations assert that Pakistani authorities are using deadly attack at school in Peshawar as pretext to push out Afghan refugees More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Kerry Seeks Assurances of Russian Non-Interference in Ukrainei
X
March 03, 2015 3:11 AM
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has told his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, that his country could face further consequences to what he called its “already strained economy” if Moscow does not fully comply with a cease-fire in Ukraine. The two met, on Monday, on the sidelines of a U.N. Human Rights Council meeting in Geneva, where Kerry outlined human rights violations in Russian-annexed Crimea and eastern Ukraine. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports from Geneva.
Video

Video Kerry Seeks Assurances of Russian Non-Interference in Ukraine

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has told his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, that his country could face further consequences to what he called its “already strained economy” if Moscow does not fully comply with a cease-fire in Ukraine. The two met, on Monday, on the sidelines of a U.N. Human Rights Council meeting in Geneva, where Kerry outlined human rights violations in Russian-annexed Crimea and eastern Ukraine. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports from Geneva.
Video

Video Smartphones May Help in Diagnosing HIV

Diagnosing infections such as HIV requires expensive clinical tests, making the procedure too costly for many poor patients or those living in remote areas. But a new technology called lab-on-a-chip may make the tests more accessible to many. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Refugees Complain of Harassment in Pakistan

Afghan officials have expressed concern over reports of a crackdown on Afghan refugees in Pakistan following the Peshawar school attack in December. Reports of mass arrests and police harassment coupled with fear of an uncertain future are making life difficult for a population that fled its homeland to escape war. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports from Islamabad.
Video

Video Ukrainian Volunteers Prepare to Defend Mariupol

Despite the ongoing ceasefire in Ukraine, soldiers in the city of Mariupol fear that pro-Russian separatists may be getting ready to attack. The separatists must take or encircle the city if they wish to gain land access to Crimea, which was annexed by Russia early last year. But Ukrainian forces, many of them volunteers, say they are determined to defend it. Patrick Wells reports from Mariupol.
Video

Video Moscow Restaurants Suffer in Bad Economy, Look for Opportunity

As low oil prices and Western sanctions force Russia's economy into recession, thousands of Moscow restaurants are expected to close their doors. Restaurant owners face rents tied to foreign currency, while rising food prices mean Russians are spending less when they dine out. One entrepreneur in Moscow has started a dinner kit delivery service for those who want to cook at home to save money but not skimp on quality. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video US, Cuba Report Progress in Latest Talks to Restore Ties

The United States and Cuba say they have made progress in the second round of talks on restoring diplomatic relations more than 50 years after breaking off ties. Delegations from both sides met in Washington on Friday to work on opening embassies in Havana and Washington and iron out key obstacles to historic change. VOA’s Mary Alice Salinas reports from the State Department.
Video

Video Presidential Hopefuls Battle for Conservative Hearts and Minds

One after another, presumptive Republican presidential contenders auditioned for conservative support this week at the Conservative Political Action Conference held outside Washington. The rhetoric was tough as a large field of potential candidates tried to woo conservative support with red-meat attacks on President Barack Obama and Democrats in Congress. VOA Political Columnist Jim Malone takes a look.
Video

Video NYC's Restaurant Week: An Economic Boom in Fine Dining

New Yorkers take pride in setting world trends — in fashion, the arts and fine dining. The city’s famous biannual Restaurant Week plays a significant role in a booming tourism industry that sustains 359,000 jobs and generates $61 billion in yearly revenue. VOA's Ramon Taylor reports.
Video

Video Brookhaven at Cutting Edge of US Energy Research

Issues like the Keystone XL pipeline, fracking and instability in the Middle East are driving debate in the U.S. about making America energy independent. Recently, the American Energy Innovation Council urged Congress and the White House to make expanded energy research a priority. One beneficiary of increased energy spending would be the Brookhaven National Lab, where clean, renewable, efficient energy is the goal. VOA's Bernard Shusman reports.
Video

Video Southern US Cities Preserve Civil Rights Heritage to Boost Tourism

There has been a surge of interest in the American civil rights movement of the 1950s and '60s, thanks in part to the Hollywood motion picture "Selma." Five decades later, communities in the South are embracing the dark chapters of their past with hopes of luring tourism dollars. VOA's Chris Simkins reports.
Video

Video Deep Under Antarctic Ice Sheet, Life!

With the end of summer in the Southern hemisphere, the Antarctic research season is over. Scientists from Northern Illinois University are back in their laboratory after a 3-month expedition on the Ross Ice Shelf, the world’s largest floating ice sheet. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, they hope to find clues to explain the dynamics of the rapidly melting ice and its impact on sea level rise.
Video

Video Lao Dam Project Runs Into Opposition

A Lao dam project on a section of the Mekong River is drawing opposition from local fishermen, international environmental groups and neighboring countries. VOA's Say Mony visited the region to investigate the concerns. Colin Lovett narrates.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More