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Philippines

Philippine typhoon victims given their daily bread

Sorsogon bishop revives Covid-19 baking project to help those hard hit by monster storms in neighboring diocese

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Philippine typhoon victims given their daily bread

Sorsogon Bishop Jose Alan Dialogo bakes bread for typhoon victims. (Photo supplied) 

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A diocese in southern Luzon in the Philippines has baked bread to help victims of two recent typhoons that forced at least 700,000 residents from their homes.

Typhoon Goni slammed into Catanduanes, Camarines and Albay provinces packing winds of up to 225kph, damaging many buildings and triggering mudslides around Mount Mayon, the Philippines’ most active volcano.

A few days later, Typhoon Vamco hit the same region, leaving 22 dead and damaging the homes of at least 350,000 residents.

In response, Sorsogon Diocese revived its “Bishop's Bread” project to help the victims. The project is named after Sorsogon Bishop Jose Alan Dialogo, a baker, who started the project in April.

Then, Bishop Dialogo and clergymen provided bread for health workers and patients battling the coronavirus in his diocese. Now they are doing the same for rescuers and churchgoers of neighboring Legpazpi Diocese, which was hit hard by the storms.

“From feeding evacuees, health workers and rescuers in Sorsogon, we are now helping our adopted parishes in Legazpi, Albay. We also distribute bread to volunteers in our warehouse and repacking center,” Sorsogon priest Father George Fajardo told UCA News.

He said Sorsogon Diocese has adopted three parishes in Legazpi Diocese and provided them with relief items and construction materials.

“The need for emergency food assistance for our adopted parishes in Legaspi Diocese inspired us to reactivate the Bishop’s Bread project together with fish, rice, canned goods and hygiene kits,” Father Fajardo said.

Father Fajardo said Bishop Dialogo taught seminarians how to bake bread while their classes were suspended during the typhoons.

Father Fajardo said that helping the needy during difficult times was very fulfilling.

“Doing what Jesus would do in times of crises like the pandemic and calamities gives joy to the heart. It is just discipleship … I am very grateful to the availability and generosity of the people of Sorsogon and members of the parishes, religious and civic groups who donated food, goods and cash,” he said.

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