Today is the feast day of the Immaculate Conception in my hometown in the Philippines. However, the week-long celebration supposedly culminating today was cancelled due to the arrival of typhoon Ruby (international name: Hagupit) in the province.
Thankfully, our province is not in the direct path of typhoon Ruby, and the destruction was not as massive as during last year’s Typhoon Yolanda (international name: Haiyan). Still, it was strong in other provinces, wreaking havoc in most-affected towns. We were lucky that my hometown was spared this year, and for the other provinces that were not, my heart goes out to them. Hopefully, they’ll be able to bounce back from this natural disaster in no time.
I have been worrying since yesterday but my sister assured me that they are all okay. According to her, the weather today is good – no more rains and winds. What they’re busy now with is picking up the pieces left by the typhoon. Cleaning up and drying out things under the sun. But only after they’ve come back from hearing mass today. And yes, there are so many things to be thankful for today. Typhoons and other disasters come ago but the faith of my countrymen is very much alive and unwavering.
This is the altar of the Immaculate Conception church, photo taken by my sister-in-law. This is where I was baptised, as my father and other siblings were. Although the church is newly-renovated, it still is the same altar that I remember, and the same statue of the Virgin Mary cloaked in a blue robe and golden trimmings.