It is no secret that ICM is able to do the work we do and help as many people as we have because of our partnership with the compassionate and hardworking partner pastors. They’re the ones who host the Transform program in our communities and sustain the impact of the program after. During the pandemic lockdowns, they were the ones who helped us know where and how much relief to send. Millions of ultra-poor Filipinos were reached through them.
When Typhoon Odette hit, many of our partner pastors suffered too. Yet, even with their own homes and churches destroyed by the strongest typhoon of 2021, they immediately got up to help their communities. That’s the heart of our pastors.
In this time of their own great need, ICM is helping our partner pastors by sending them food and materials to rebuild.
For this Typhoon Odette update, here are a few stories sent in from the field on our pastors:
In Bacolod, Pastor Joebert faces struggle all around him. “The typhoon put our community in a very traumatic and devastating situation. Many houses have been destroyed because of the storm. The majority of the houses here have not been fixed yet. My family is safe by God’s grace, but our house was totally damaged.”
He found temporary shelter for his family and prioritized fixing up the church as best he could so that the Transform graduation could still go on as planned. While ICM’s staff did deliver food packs to his community, he still sees lots of need.
“I think most of the people here in our area need food and water,” he told us. “Please pray that the Lord will continue to intervene and He will continue to preserve the lives of my family as well as the lives of the people here in our community.”
Pastor Melanie, also in Bacolod, has no house after hers was destroyed. “We are currently staying in our pig pen. We just cleaned it and put some curtains up in order for us to have shelter,” she explained.
She was thankful for the food packs our staff brought her. “I’m planning on dividing them among my church members in order for them to have something to eat.” Pastor Melanie is holding on to the truth of Romans 8:28, that God works for the good of those who love him.
In Iloilo, our staff distributed food, water, and building materials to pastors who needed help rebuilding their churches. Roseniel was one of the pastors who received help. “I am very grateful that God has given me ICM for encouraging our church and helping us with some of our basic needs in times of calamities,” Roseniel said.
Ma. Rhea, an Iloilo branch head (white shirt), was part of the relief efforts. The above pictures are from Guimaras. “I feel so happy and blessed that I became part of the response team and can see how thankful the pastors are to God through ICM’s ministry,” she shared. “Pray for strength and protection so that we can still serve, giving God the glory.”