In the Philippines, it is reported that more than 1 million young people will be out of work or unable to find a job as a result of the pandemic. This has caused tremendous stress and anxiety for many of the teens enrolled in Compassion centers throughout the country. But Andy, a youth pastor at a Compassion partner church, remains hopeful and determined to inspire the young people to stay positive and trust God.
“We must not lose hope amidst the pandemic,” says Pastor Andy. “God’s promises of blessings remain true and he has great plans for each one of us, especially the teenagers.” Before the pandemic, Andy had started several youth-focused Compassion programs that had to be put on hold due to social restrictions. But that doesn’t mean Andy has stopped serving!
“We made a few changes in our activities,” he says. “I started online discipleship meetings and worship services for the youth. And I believe they were very effective.”
M-jay, a 16-year-old sponsored youngster at the center where Andy works, says he is grateful for his pastor’s efforts. “We have our online discipleship class every Monday evening and I am never absent,” he says. “I can see in Pastor’s life that there is hope for everyone to be better individuals.”
As restrictions have eased in his region, Pastor Andy has started visiting children at their homes and conducting small Bible studies. He also helps deliver food packs and relief goods to the families of the children he serves.
“This pandemic has greatly affected not only our youth but also their families,” he says. “But with the help of Compassion, we have the opportunity to share blessings to them through relief distributions, giving school and hygiene supplies, and many other ways. I also make sure to tell the youth when I visit them that they are the Lord’s treasured possession. Stay focused on God and continue to build your relationship with him.”