Navigators Face Another Typhoon in the Philippines

Navigators in the Philippines hoped that 2014 would pass without a major natural calamity. Unfortunately, Typhoon Ruby came with much wider impact and almost of the same strength with that of typhoon Yolanda last year. This recent storm hit Eastern Mindanao up to the Bicol region and then traversed toward the west, affecting the whole Visayas and Luzon, including Metro Manila.

According to the Red Cross, at least 22 people have been confirmed dead and 10 are missing at the time of this writing. The worst hit is the Eastern Samar. The Navigators have university and high school ministries in that region. Ministry leaders housed students during the storm, but due to the impact of the wind in the area, one leader’s house is presumed to have been damaged. At present Navigators there have no electricity or means of communication.

The municipality of Dolores, a nearby town, was literally wiped out due to the storm surge, which brought waves of five meters that covered the town with a deluge.

In Tacloban City last year, Navigators built a small ministry center. That center has been damaged but not destroyed by this storm. Navigator staff in Iloilo said no one in the Navigator ministry there was affected by the typhoon. However, there is great concern that the storm affected the poor communities in the Antipolo and Bicol areas. Shanties there are made of inferior materials and located along canals and river banks. At this time, Navigators don’t have word from people in those areas.

Thankfully, preventative initiatives by government and relief agencies before the storm, along with the willingness of citizens to leave their homes and go to safe places have greatly reduced the loss of life.

Please pray for the people in the Philippines as they struggle through another rebuilding process. And pray for the Navigator work in the region, that laborers for God’s kingdom would have many opportunities to serve and love those around them.

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