Philippines Residents Get Help From OB

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CEBU, PHILIPPINES -The island of Cebu is the fasting growing province in the Philippines, yet it's also one of the poorest.

Still, with the help of Operation Blessing many residents are getting the help they need to survive.

It was at a holiday of hope and cheer activity for children where Dr. Kim Pascual spotted 4-yr-old Ranjie Rosal and his brother Romeo, Jr.

Pascual, the head of Operation Blessing Philippines, noticed that something was wrong with the children.

The OB volunteer doctors discovered that Ranjie was already in a state of dengue shock while Romeo, Jr. was suffering from severe pneumonia.

After the team prayed for the family, the children were rushed to the nearest hospital, which was two hours zigzag drive down a mountain. OB doctors escorted them to the hospital and provided for their medicines and financial needs.

"We had no idea that our children were in very serious condition," Romeo Rosal, the boys' father, said. "We almost lost them. I am so grateful to Operation Blessing for saving our sons' lives."

When OB doctors visited Ranjie in the hospital a few days later they found him fully recovered and in good condition.

Their family is just one of many that have been helped through the six medical missions OB has conducted in the remote mountain towns around Cebu.

It is ironic that while the cities in Cebu are fast developing, a big part of its population about 200,000 families are among the poorest in the region.

This is why many people flock to the medical mission conducted by Operation Blessing. According to the people there, the last time their medical needs were met was in 2006.

Santiago Labasano, 72, is one of them. He came to the site to have his eyes checked for blurry vision.

Policeman Benjamin Delfin noticed that Santiago had difficulty walking towards him because of his failing eyesight.

"He said that he can hardly see," Delfin remembered. "He was groping with his hands as he approached us."

Unfortunately, there was no optical section on that particular medical mission, but this did not hinder the blessing that awaits Santiago.

At that time, CBN Asia executive vice president Malou Ibanez was just a volunteer cleaning dental instruments. But she was moved to minister to the old man and she laid her hands on Santiago's eyes and prayed for healing.

"I know in my heart God wants to heal him. As my faith was building up, I continued to declare the healing of the Lord," she said.

Within a few minutes, Santiago testified that his vision was getting clearer and clearer. Pastor Dodong Luyao, who also prayed with him, testified to Santiago's healing.

"First, he cannot identify the color of the basins," Luyao said. "But now he was able to identify the mango tree 50 meters away."

"God is a miracle working God," he added. "It's a great miracle what happened to Santiago. I believe it is always the will of God to bring healing to those in need."

Because of the miracle, both Benjamin and Santiago prayed to receive Christ as their savior on that very day.

Operation Blessing has been the source of miracles for many in Cebu.

Recently the ministry distributed food to more than 100 families who lost their homes in a fire.

Maritess Polleros says he is moved by the care and compassion that OB shows the victims.

Maritess is still recovering from the trauma of almost losing his son in the fire. Eight-year-old Jhonwell suffered third degree burns after he went back to their house to save his baby sister who he thought was still inside."

An OB doctor checked on the little hero's condition and taught Maritess how to dress the burns.

"I feel so relieved when people like you come and help us," he said. "It gives us a lot of hope to start again."

God truly poured his blessings on the people of Cebu through Operation Blessing.

Aside from the medical mission and disaster relief operation, the ministry dug wells, provided job and educational training, ministered to pastors and introduced hundreds of people to Jesus Christ.

"OB is a great help especially in these areas. People here are under served," Pastor Luyao said. "More people came to be touched by the Lord. This is a great harvest."

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Lucille Talusan

Lucille Talusan

CBN News

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