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Church services held in typhoon-shattered city

November 16, 2013 • World News


A girl holds a statue of the Virgin Mary prior to a Mass at Santo Nino church, which was damaged by Typhoon Haiyan in Tacloban, Philippines, Sunday, Nov. 17, 2013. Typhoon Haiyan, one of the most powerful storms on record, hit the country’s eastern seaboard Nov. 8, leaving a wide swath of destruction. (AP Photo/Dita Alangkara)

TACLOBAN, Philippines (AP) — Hours after the storm hit the Philippines, the Rev. Amadero Alvero was on the streets, sprinkling holy water over the dead and praying for them. By late afternoon, the 44-year-priest had blessed about 50 corpses in the remains of this shattered city.

He then returned to his half-destroyed Santo Nino church and led Mass. On Sunday, Alvero was again overseeing worship at the peach-colored building, leading services for hundreds of survivors of one of the worst storms on record.

“Despite what happened, we still believe in God,” he said. “The church may have been destroyed, but our faith is intact, as believers, as a people of God, our faith has not been destroyed.”

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