The lush landscape of Ormoc City, Leyte, Philippines is dotted with stalks of coconut trees protruding from the ground, fruitless and leafless. It takes a powerful storm to bend a palm tree, let alone snap it in half. But the strongest storm to ever strike the Philippines made sure the area won’t have fruit-bearing trees for another 10 years.
For a storm that lasted nearly an hour, the damage to the palm trees destroyed the income for many of the people who made a living from harvesting the coconuts in these areas. Filipinos depended on the harvest of the coconuts to feed their families, without any hope of income for many years.
And yet, just a few miles away, in a church rebuilt with sheets of galvanized metal and wood scraps, Filipinos are worshiping God. Calunangan Christian Light of Life Church has baptized many people since the typhoon, and other churches throughout the hard-hit islands are reporting expansive growth.
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