On the morning of September 29, the parsonage and family home of Nilo Rosende, pastor of the Mandaue First Church of the Nazarene in Cebu City, Philippines, was gutted by fire and no belongings could be saved.
Fire destroys parsonage in the Philippines
Thursday, October 22, 2009
Cebu City, Philippines
Calamity strikes in the most unexpected ways. Like a thief in the night, it comes when least expected. On the morning of September 29, the parsonage and family home of Nilo Rosende, pastor of the Mandaue First Church of the Nazarene in Cebu City, Philippines, was gutted by fire and no belongings could be saved.

Pastor Nilo and his wife left early that morning to attend a birthday party of a member of the congregation. They had just sent their three children to school. Pastor Nilo's mother and four younger siblings, who also live in the home, did not go out. When the Rosendes returned home a few hours later, the fire was already out of control. Thankfully, everyone made it out of the house safely.

According to a local news report, 136 families were affected by the fire. The blaze reportedly started three houses down from Pastor Nilo's home and spread throughout the neighborhood, causing at least one casualty.

Local Nazarenes immediately opened their arms in comfort, housing the pastor and his family in a neighboring church's parsonage while providing food, clothing, bedding, and financial support. The district is being called upon to join the relief effort to extend help to other victims of the fire. The Nazarene Compassionate Ministries Child Sponsorship Program has provided funds for the pastor's three children to purchase school supplies and uniforms. The Philippines Field Office has also provided support to help rebuild the destroyed parsonage.

"In the midst of recovery from two typhoons and the resulting flooding and landslides, the speedy response by local Nazarenes to this unfortunate event is the living out of a Christlike love for their neighbors. Join them in prayer for their families, churches, communities, and country in this time of hardship."
-- District Superintendent Renato P. Villagonza, Nazarene Compassionate Ministries
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