Monday, March 25, 2013

March 20-23: Medical Mission in Palawan

 Upon the request of the Philippine Marines, we conducted medical missions in two different remote areas in Palawan.  


 Our team was composed of Fr. Onoda, Sheryl Ocampo, Marie Dewynter, Marie Helene Fontaine, and Eleni Felinska. We arrived in Palawan on March 20 and did the finalized the organization of the mission. We conducted the first medical mission on March 21 in New Camaray, Roxas, where the people were very poor and lived in difficult conditions, and were thereby easily lured into joining the New People's Army, a communist rebel group that works to destabilize the government and promote communist ideology.  We were able to serve 481 patients.  

Around forty people attended the Holy Mass, and 10 received Holy Communion.  Rosaries, scapulars, and miraculous medals were distributed.

 We went to Teneguiban in El Nido on March 22.  We were able to serve 472 patients that day.  

  The people appreciated the mission.  
Fr. Onoda was touched.  He says that if there will be another occasion, he would like to continue to respond positively to the request from the Philippine Marines.  

On March 23, we packed the remaining medicines and supplies and went swimming.  Who could resist the wonderful beach?

The military command that invited us to come to Palawan is the same group that Fr. Onoda visited in Sulu.  They had been reassigned to Palawan where they saw the health needs of the natives and asked Fr. Onoda for medical assistance.  When the military sent their request for a medical mission, they simply said it would be for the poor natives in the area.  Without knowing exactly where in Palawan the mission would be, Fr. Onoda granted the request.  How greatly and happily surprised he was to discover that the mission would find him in El Nido!  
A simple act of charity has brought us to a little paradise.  How wonderful!  Deo gratias!

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