By: Ganie Ehido, SVD.
Typhoon Ruby (Hagupit) had crossed the Philippines and fortunately the feared scenario did not happen. At one point, it was reported the typhoon wind speed reached 350 kms per hour, very similar to “Haiyan” but it turned out to be false. Our confreres in Tacloban, in their report, gave a good picture the aftermath of the typhoon Ruby (Hagupit). They said our school building in Tacloban was utilized as evacuation center for around 250 families. The Missionaries of Charity (Mother Theresa Sisters) and their clients sought shelter into our building. One of the children under their care died of cold temperature. The evacuees were given rice and canned goods by the Holy Spirit Sisters. Electricity went out, but promised to restore in a few days’ time. The school now is using a generator which SVD hospital lent.

The typhoon did not come as strong as Haiyan, nevertheless, the winds were powerful enough and moved out very slowly. As a result, our school chapel building was unroofed, including the newly rebuilt walk way near the entrance of the school. At the hospital, some parts were destroyed again. A portion of a wall fell down. Flooding was reported that made moving around temporarily difficult. Fallen trees were numerous. Foods were needed but I guess, by now the general situation is already stable.

As we are still validating some areas where our housing projects were implemented, we can estimate that those houses exposed near the sea or perched on elevated places, could have suffered damages again.

There were no reported massive destruction, numerous deaths or storm surge but it is imagined there were re-traumatizing effect from the rushing winds or surging flood water. Eastern Samar which was worst hit reported thousands of evacuation efforts and damages to houses, infrastructures and farms.

Thanks for the lesson learned from previous calamity, the people and the government are now better prepared. Some government agencies organized distribution of relief materials and food.

Any intervention on our part could very well be collaborated with NGOS and church organizations close to affected areas. In the meantime, we continue to implement unfinished projects intended for “Haiyan” victims – such as housing projects, schools repairs and livelihood programs.

 

typhoon 2

Thank you for prayers!

Indore, India: A Street Play was staged at Bhil Paltan, a slum in Indore, on July 16, 2014 as one of the outreach programs of Janvikas Society. Right to Education, Child Labour, life struggles of Rag Pickers and the need for empowerment were the themes dealt in the play.

A national body to combat human trafficking has been set up in Brazil as part of a new strategy aimed at tackling the crime; but without much needed changes in the law, slave labor in the country will continue to flourish.

Ambassa (Tripura), 27 June, 2021: Holy Spirit Catholic Church in collaboration with ‘Oisho Bani Society’ a NGO, planted 500 saplings in 8 villages in Ambassa Sub-Division.

This is a story of fr. Jacek Gniadek  SVD and Liu, a Chinese migrant, during the coronavirus lockdown in Poland. I translated this story from Polish to English. Originally he wrote it for our Polish SVD magazine “Komunikaty”.  Touching, unbelievable and a true story that happened recently.

COVID -19 has shaken the whole world miserably with great pain and sorrow by creating massive disaster. Today the entire universe is entangled under the powerful grip of the corona virus and India is not an exception to this awful situation. At this juncture, our country is also tremendously experiencing the most dreadful storm of this corona crisis and fighting hard to come out of this most strenuous and stressful situation. In the process the social distancing was introduced to prevent the corona infection and the so called ‘lock down’ was imposed on the people severely which has created immense damage and a huge disaster in the lives of the common people especially on the migrants, domestic labourers, rag pickers, daily wagers and the ongoing construction workers.

All whole world is suffering now with the covid-19 pandemic. In Hungary since the 16th of march, the governement has decided to stop all activities: kindergardens, schools and universities. Similarly, the bishops conference also decided to take some measures according to the prohibitions taken by the autorities for example having the holy masses without the congregation. The priest can celebrate mass but in private etc.

COVID 19 outbreak has caught all of us unawares. In a bid to contain the spread of CORONA VIRUS the government has decided on total lockdowns, self-quarantine and forced isolation. We are witnessing uncertainty at best and insanity at worst. The feelings are mixed. It has changed our lives. Our mental and social wellbeing are affected. Confirmed cases of virus infected are rising rapidly.

On the past 2nd of October, West Papua Network in Rome, in which the SVD is a member, organized the seminar “West Papua, a neglected heaven —justice and human rights based on the Gospel value-” at Augustinianum in Rome. The main purpose of the seminar was to address the issue of human rights violation of indigenous West Papuan people. The local Catholic church of the five dioceses in West Papua and some religious congregations working in West Papua recently published the three-year human rights report, and the English translation was launched during the seminar.

Between November 20 and 23 of the current year, the Social Week and the 5th Peace Walk were held in the Santa María neighborhood of the city of Aracaju / SE, Brazil. This walk was the fifth one made in the neighborhood, with the clear objective of promoting peace, security and, above all, respect for human dignity.

The World Adivasi (tribal) Day was celebrated on Sunday, 11th August, 2019, at St. Theresa’s High School, organized by St. Arnold Youth Group and Urban Community Development Centre (UCDC), Bandra (West). There were about 700 participants; around 600 adults/youth and 100 children. World Adivasi Day is the most looked forward event by the Tribal domestic workers and the unorganized laborers. The entire Event Management was planned by the Adivasi youth group.

The climate crisis is an emergency which needs an immediate attention. Our hotter planet is already hurting millions of people. We need to act right now to stop burning fossil fuels and ensure a rapid energy revolution with equity, reparations and climate justice at its heart.

Being encouraged by Fr. Andrews Obeng, SVD from Ghana province, my then novice master, to consider the JPIC dimension of our Congregation, and having all the opportunities given by the Congo province regarding this dimension, I chose to have my pastoral experience at Dzaleka refugee camp in Malawi. A passion for justice, a desire for peace and non-violence and a concern for the integrity of all creation moved my person to go forward in my choice despite the discouragement and the difficulty that working in a refugee camp can present.

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