JOURNEYS

Special Delivery to Philippines

Providing food and hope to those in need on a special humanitarian trip back home (Philippines)

Filipino children eagerly await the day's meal. The children live in extreme poverty in Manila and gain their daily subsistence thanks to local organization Our Lady of Peace Foundation. © Daniel Biadog 2009

Chaplain Don Biadog feeds a young Filipino girl at a local feeding project in Manila. With poverty at such extreme levels, outreaches like this are the only way that some children gain their meals. Biadog made a special humanitarian mission to the Philippines to help children and families throughout the country. © Daniel Biado 2009

We could sense that it was a very Spirit-led mission from the get go, calling to pour even more deeply into the country that I had grown up in. At its foundation, it was an idea and concept bathed in a bounty of prayers and support from friends and family. I could sense His presence leading us even before we landed.

The call to uplift the Philippines was heavy on the heart since leaving there one year ago. I had gone on a trip with a similar focus one year prior and throughout my career as a U.S. Navy chaplain. When I left after 2008, I felt something deep in the heart: His work through me—and in the people that were connected to me—was not finished there.

Together with my son Daniel, along with good friend Tony Cercena and daughter Cindy who arrived earlier, we were on our way on early morning March 16 from Providence, Rhode Island to the Provinces of the Philippine Islands.

When we touched down in Manila on Mar 17, we were welcomed by families, Brother Ricardo Biadog of Philippine Navy, daughter Cindy, and nephew, Jayson Biadog & Felix De Asis (who made professions of faith and baptized during this Mission trip) and Missionary friends Derek and Amanda Ross of True Love Waits Ministry. It was a warming feeling to be back in the beautiful country of the Philippines and with such loving people.

The main emphasis of the trip was to feed and medically treat the most impoverished through partnerships with a number of local agencies, NGOs, and local churches that serve in that capacity.

Our first outreach was in the squatter villages in Metro Manila with Sister Eva Maamo who is known as the “healing nun” and “Mother Theresa of the Philippines.” She runs an organization called Our Lady of Peace Foundation. We were able to feed 100 kids who live under the Paco Bridge that day and 100 children who live next door to Our Lady of Peace Charity hospital in Paranaque City the next day.

The island of Negros Occidental was our next stop, where we partnered with Negros Kabataan, Inc (which means Negros Children), run by NKI founders, Daisy and Arnel Ainza. More feeding and medical treatment ensued there, much of it done on humble sugar cane villages. You could feel the impact we were making, one that made me look up to God and give thanks as they enthusiastically thanked us. Those who were able to communicate, said to us "Maraming, Maraming Salamat," meaning thank you very much.

While in Negros Occidental, we also visited the Baptist Missionary Association of the Philippines Bible College, founded by Doyle Moore in 1976, and where I had my beginnings. The college was having a conference at the time of our visit and it was amazing to be able to join in such an event to connect and uplift each other, as we continue to minister to the world. Metro Manila, Negros and

We would also leap over to Lacawon Island and Pangasinan Province for similar outreaches and community building, as it felt like the Lord was almost literally giving us wings to travel throughout the country.

Overall the journey in faith, which also included fellowship with three churches in, allowed us to interact and help touch the lives of an estimated 2, 560 people.

It was an honor for me that the good Lord chose me and my ministry partners to help and serve "the least of these God's children.” Seeing and feeding the hungry babies and orphaned children were a joy and a delight to do so. I was so happy to serve the Lord this way.

Expressions from the faces and eyes of children and their parents told us that they were very happy that we came and helped them.

I always wondered who were really truly blessed during the Mission. I believe that it was reciprocal. We blessed them by our presence and assistance and in return the poor blessed us by their attitude of gratitude and smiles and God received the glory!