Please be praying for our Brothers and Sisters on Mindanao who have been hit by a devastating Typhoon which came ashore before dawn on Tuesday, December 4 and swept across the unprotected island which has historically been missed by typhoons that have always hit farther north in Luzon. Only one other Typhoon of this size has hit so close to the equater in all of recorded history. The typhoon was 331 miles across. By the grace of God the winds dropped to sustained speeds of 110 mph before it hit. The path of the typhoon took it across the region where most of our churches are located. The storm dropped three times the rain they normally receive in the entire month of December in just a few hours. The death toll is at 418 and rising with another 400+ still missing as entire villages have been washed away. 250,000 have had to be evacuated because their homes are damaged, destroyed, or underwater. We were finally able to make contact with Pastor Albert Asang, our Philippines Director. He and his family are safe but they have had to be evacuated because the entire village is flooded. The water is knee high in their homes. They have been without electricity for a week. He has only been able to make contact with three of our churches – in Sua-on, in Salvacion, and in Kipalili.
All three churches have been damaged or completely destroyed along with the pastors’ homes. We have heard on the news that 44 villagers were killed in Andap where another of our churches is located when an evacuation center was destroyed by a landslide. Our people on Mindanao are in desperate need of food, safe drinking water, shelter, and money to rebuild their homes and their churches.
Please pray for them in this hour of great trial. Pray that rescuers can reach the rest of the villages that are cut off because of landslides and heavy flooding. Praise God for His hand of protection and provision. Pray that Pastor Albert can quickly make contact with the rest of our churches and get an accurate picture of the extent of the damages. Pray for wisdom and finances that we will know best how to meet the needs in the most efficient way. Pray that in the midst of this great tragedy Jesus Christ will be glorified and thousands of souls will come to salvation because of it. Thank you so much for your prayers. We serve a great God who is able to do exceedingly, abundantly above all we can ask or think when we put our trust and our confidence in Him.
Howard & Barbara Gard