A First-Person Account of Living Through Typhoon Bopha

Juliet Sevilla is a 17-year-old mother living in Anda Barangay of New Bataan municipality in Compostela Valley Province, which was hit by Typhoon Bopha in December 2012. After the storm, Juliet received an LWR Mission Quilt, Baby Care Kit, Personal Care Kit and toothpaste from Lutheran World Relief. She told the following story to our staff in the Philippines.

I let the rain wash my face as tears of pain and sorrow engulfed me.

We were perched up on the roof where our family sought refuge from the storm.

I closed my eyes for a moment of silence and prayed for all those who had gone before us.

With my eyes closed, I heard cries of desperation rush through my head over and over and over again.

I heard my brother shout and cry for help. But now, he is nowhere to be found. It breaks my heart, but we were all helpless and hopeless.

Amidst the darkness strong winds blew and streams of raging flood waters rushed by.

I heard many of my neighbors pleading, grieving, crying for help…screaming in hysteria and shrieking in anguish. The wrath of Mother Nature was unimaginable.

Beyond the horizon I saw the remains of trees struggling to protect humanity. But alas, they failed.

Typhoon Bopha left our beloved hometown destitute and muddled with debris, rubbish and broken lives.

Unbelievable, but true.  After the storm, it is calm.  The breeze is sweet and cool. Over my head, the darkness is filled with stars and the shining moon, which brings a spark of hope for the days ahead.

We are lucky that people have come from all over to help rebuild our lives and bring us hope.

Thanks to LWR, I have now blankets, clothes and socks to warm my baby during cold rainy nights.

Typhoon Bopha has left a scar that obliges us to do our share of preserving what God has given us and to build better for the future.  With guidance from God, we can each make a difference and rebuild our lives.

As I awake from this bad dream, I can see the breaking of a new dawn with illuminating rays of hope from the Creator.