Sierra Leone is Ebola free!

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Bacolod City—Today Sierra Leone is declared Ebola-free. Thanks to the divine providence and endless supplications. The people on that part of the globe can continue to live a normal life.

Indeed the people of Sierra Leone have lost their loved ones, friends, or neighbors adding to the death toll of more than 10, 000. Africans from Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone altogether suffered from that catastrophic outbreak.

As of November 6, 2015, World Health Organization (WHO) records 28,586 cases in three countries and deaths of about 11,299.

For many people, the Ebola virus has hugely changed them in the way they look at the danger of an outbreak, perhaps totally different from civil unrest due to the unseen yet fatal enemy-the virus.

Little did we know, however, about the freaking outbreak. We are relatively far from the actual scene. We depended so much on the images that have surfaced from all forms of media. The first hand information is always the most credible information that can best describe and narrate to us the situation. Now it is not going to be from anything else but from him who opted to stay there until such time that the Ebola was finally subdued.

His name is Bro. Jonathan Jamero, OAR from the Order of Augustinian Recollects. He’s a dauntless man from Nurala, South Cotabato, Phillipines. He volunteered to the African mission way back in 2007. His mission assignment is in the northern part of Sierra Leone the open gate to Guinea where the Ebola case was first ever recorded. His stay there as missionary is at times interrupted because of illness or needed trainings to be completed to be able to continue serving in the African mission.

I would like to share to you my interview with him.

Fray Abraham:

Fray Jamms, the moment you heard about the outbreak, what was your initial plan?

Fray Jammers:

“Actually, there was no plan. If ever there was, I would say, it’s off the record.” [Laughing]

Fray Abraham:

Tell me about the lock down. How did the government disseminate the information?

Fray Jammers:

“The President of Salon (Sierra Leone) sent the information through mobile phones. The lock down alert was to warn everyone of the dreaded disease and to stop wandering about unreasonably in the villages. We were also given a Pass ticket of a sort. It determines your health status. They would also check you if you got fever, like that. There were several check points. From Kamalu to Makeni at least there were four checkpoints and then another nine or more on the way to Freetown.

Fray Abraham:

What did you do? Did you panic?

Fray Jammers:

“We have agreed among ourselves that Fray Jose Luis Garayoa and Fray Rene Gonzales would be staying in Kamabai and Fray Dennis and I opted to go to Kamalu in our house in the north. We have literally locked down our gate bracing our walls against any possible intruders just in case the situation worsen. But again, I would say, in a way, that’s useless to the unseen virus. What we could do was to really pray.”

Fray Abraham:

What’s your daily routine inside our house? Did you have  enough provisions? Remember you couldn’t go anywhere.

Fray Jammers:

“Well, we have at least provisions good for a month. After a month we decided to go to the Capital, Freetown to secure what we need. We have to pay wages and also we have to buy food. Our cook from Kamakwe and a convent boy Francis Turay, James of Makale were with us then. At first we were not allowed to celebrate Mass. We prayed the Breviary everyday, something that at least we were so consistent of doing it. When Kamakwe was found to have Ebola case, we could not go up north to celebrate the Mass there. When in another village Kamaranka also got infected, we stopped going there too.

We had to communicate through mobile phones.

But do you remember the check point located at the crossroads of Kamalu and Kamabai near Makeni; with the local vendors who normally display their goods; vegetables, root crops, and many other supplies? They vacated the area because of the lock down. If they could not sell anything there what would happen to them? They would go hungry! We would go hungry.”

Fray Abraham:

I do remember that. The sweet potatoes and peanuts are their best harvest. Was there anyone from our parishioners who got infected by the Ebola?

Fray Jammers:

“There was none. There was one who had been reported that he had copious vomiting of blood and eventually he died. Accordingly he was just a visitor from Freetown. His entire family was quarantined. That was terrifying. Although there were doubts from among the locale that it’s not Ebola.”

Fray Abraham:

What was the Church’s measures during that ghastly months of July and August of 2014 in Salon?

Fray Jammers:

“Ah, there was no mass to be celebrated in our Catholic Churches. The Diocese has extended help of food supplies to families being quarantined. We also gave bags of rice. The dead were taken cared of by the team from the government and World Health Organization’s response team. People were not allowed to touch the dead corpse which is part of their ritual to wash the body before burying it.”

Fray Abraham:

Knowing the threat of virus, were you not afraid to die? It was like a suicide on your part to prefer to stay in Salon considering the danger?

Fray Jammers:

“Ah, [Laughing], I thought that was my point of being martyred… I opted to stay because I knew it would give hope to the people. We are their shepherd we could not abandon them. I see in their eyes the spirit of appreciation…With that it  has also supplied my courage. There was one time, our duck got bitten by a Cobra. Fray Dennis love to eat fried chicken or any sort of fowl especially duck. I told the cook to fry it. Afterwards I started to eat it. Fray Dennis was just looking at me while I was eating the deep-fried fowl. Later on he told me, perhaps jokingly, ‘if Brother Jammers would die I would be taking care of everything. Aha! so he said: “Give me my portion of that sweet smelling fowl  Fray Jams. Let’s eat together and die together.”

[Laughing].

Fray Abraham:

Oh, my! You could have survived the Ebola but probably not the venum from the mamba. [Laughing].

Some media men were looking after you, in fact Fray Dominador Mercado a.k.a. “Patik ” went live on National TV about the Ebola. Did you receive a call from any of those media men? Did you receive a message from our Priors and brethren?

Fray Jammers:

Apparently yes! The Press tried to wire my aunt in General Santos inquiring about my current situation.

From the Priors? Ah, [Laughing]! I think yes, the message was more of an assurance that they were praying for our safety, for all of us. I am so grateful to them.”

Fray Abraham:

Is there anything you want to say which I have not asked?

Fray Jammers:

“I have already shared to our young seminarians and professed brothers. They were all enthusiastic to go to Sierra Leone. The reality remains. After ordination, nobody seems to be so excited. If they go, they would spend only a few months. I still encourage them to try, to dream, to beat the unbeatable foe, going through hardships. I’m going back. I hope some will join us there.

Fray Abraham:

Thank you Brother Jammers!

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Frei Bo

Frei Bo

Priest-Religious of the Order of Augustinian Recollects, Province of St. Ezekiel Moreno. Webmaster.

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< 2021 >
January
SMTuWThFS
     1
  • All day
    January 1, 2021

    SOLEMNITY OF MARY, MOTHER OF GOD

    54th WORLD DAY OF PEACE

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Cristita Cha, AR

2
  • All day
    January 2, 2021

    ATTENTION: Provincial-Level Christmas Party is CANCELLED.

    SIMPLE PROFESSION OF VOWS OF FRAY CHRISLEAN REY PAMILAGA
    SEMONORE, Antipolo City / 10:00 A.M.

    BIRTHDAY
    Bro. Conrado Flores, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Emma Toro, SAR (Valencia Chapter)
    Sis. Marcelina Nicolas, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Rizalina Salera, SAR (Cavite Chapter)

3
  • All day
    January 3, 2021

    SOLEMNITY OF THE EPIPHANY

    500th Year of the Excommunication of Martin Luther (1521-2021)

    60th Anniversary of the Establishment of a Catholic Hierarchy in Indonesia

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ma. Bella Mojica, AR
    Sis. Basilisa Espinola, SAR (Miranila Chapter)
    Sis. Carmencita Abis, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    Sis. Melodina Paragat, SAR (Talisay Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Clemencia Ranin, AR

4
  • All day
    January 4, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Bro. Ernil Orbecido, SAR (Bacolod Chapter)
    Sis Mary Grace Susas, SAR (Talisay Chapter)
    Fran Cheska Marie Andan (RAY-Laray)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Regina Cadiz, AR
    +Sr. Adelaida Elli, AR

5
  • All day
    January 5, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sis Estelita Divinagracia, SAR (Miranila Chapter)
    Bro. Jose Pepito Gabriel Bonete, SAR (Puerto Princesa Chapter)
    Sis. Emiliana Carao, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Leila Barizo (RAY-Cavite)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Ma. Cleofe Claro, AR
    +Fray Casiano Cosmilla
    [Attention Recoletos de Manila Community: “the community to which he belongs will celebrate… Mass on the first anniversary of his death” (Add. Code 94a)]

6
  • All day
    January 6, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sis. Sylvia Evina, SAR (Puerto Princesa Chapter)
    Sis. Grace Aba-a, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Juana de la Merced, AR
    +Bro. Rustico Magdales, SAR (Manila Chapter)

7
  • All day
    January 7, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sis. Eliza Stubbs, SAR (Miranila Chapter)

8
  • All day
    January 8, 2021

    RST: START OF ENROLMENT

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Ian Anthony Espartero
    Sr. Leticia Cerdeño, AR

9
  • All day
    January 9, 2021

    FEAST OF THE BLACK NAZARENE
    (The traditional Traslación is canceled due to Covid-19)

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Rosario Bianes, AR
    Sis. Marcelina Taguinod, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    |+Sr. Dominga Gargarita, AR

10
  • All day
    January 10, 2021

    FEAST OF THE BAPTISM OF THE LORD

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Ma. Luz Asuncion Nitura, AR
    +Sr. Paulina de la Purisima Corazon de Maria, AR

11
  • All day
    January 11, 2021

    BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Catalina Ruiz, AR
    Sis. Elena Dagdag, SAR (Baguio Chapter)
    Ian Gabrielle Canlubo (RAY-Cavite)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Ma. Zita Lloren, AR
    +Sis. Elena Caballero, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)

12
  • All day
    January 12, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Reynaldo Jaranilla
    Sis. Josephine Guinto, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Bro. Hilario Torcedo, SAR (Baguio Chapter)
    +Sr. Ma. Fortunata Gayumale Gaspillo, AR

13
  • All day
    January 13, 2021

    ANNIVERSARY OF EPISCOPAL ORDINATION
    (1998-2021)
    Archbp. Jose Palma, D.D. (Archdiocese of Cebu)

    BIRTHDAY
    Bro. Jonathan Casiño, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Bro. Antonio Sonsona, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Mo. Rosario Rosales, AR

14
  • All day
    January 14, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Emilia Madrigal, AR
    Bro. Jose Valdez, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Luisa Gumiran, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Esterlita Gracia, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)

15
  • All day
    January 15, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Anthony Irineo
    Sr. Ma. Marcela de la Cruz, AR
    Bro. Maximo Epanto, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Ma. Virgin de la Consolacion, AR

16
  • All day
    January 16, 2021

    COMMEMORATION OF THE DEAD RELATIVES OF THE MEMBERS OF THE ORDER

    BIRTHDAY
    Mo. Maria del Carmen, OAR (Bacolod)
    Sr. Zerah Cordero, AR
    Sis. Alice Mojica, SAR (Cavite Chapter)
    Sis. Bernarda Tan, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Lucia Degamo, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    +Sis. Amelia Casiño, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)

17
  • All day
    January 17, 2021

    FEAST OF THE STO. NINO

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Corvin Maturan
    Sis. Belen Taniagao, SAR (Miranila Chapter / Trial)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Celedonia de la Santissima Trinidad, AR
    +Sr. Cesaria Barbarona, AR

18
  • All day
    January 18, 2021

    WEEK OF PRAYER FOR CHRISTIAN UNITY
    Inclusive dates: January 18-25, 2021
    Theme: “Abide in my love and you shall bear much fruit” (John 16:1-17)

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Joseph Dexter Palagtiosa
    Sis. Guia Gonzales, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)

19
  • All day
    January 19, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Cleofe Maria Agua, AR
    Sis. Angelica Tejada, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Myrna Amante, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

20
  • All day
    January 20, 2021

    ST. SEBASTIAN (PATRON SAINT OF MANILA & CAVITE COMMUNITIES, DIOCESE OF BACOLOD)

    SSC-R MANILA’s FOUNDATION CELEBRATIONS
    Inclusive dates: January 20-22,2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Adelina Reyes, AR
    Sis. Mercedes Velada, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

21
  • All day
    January 21, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Urbano Galanido
    Fray Jerome Virtudazo
    Sis. Leticia de Silva, SAR (Baguio Chapter)
    Sis. Alice Catulong, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Anecita Paglinawan, SAR (Laray Chapter)

22
  • All day
    January 22, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Most Rev. Victor Bendico, DD (Bishop of Baguio)

23
  • All day
    January 23, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Bro. Marciano Cleofas, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Gloria Acosta, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    Sis. Esterlina Silva, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)
    Sis. Rosemarie Gaspar, SAR (Valencia Chapter)
    Judith Mondejar (RAY-Caidiocan)
    Kathrine Bacalso (RAY-Laray)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Gertrudis del Pilar, AR
    +Sr. Cresencia Vailoces, AR

24
  • All day
    January 24, 2021

    SUNDAY OF THE WORD OF GOD
    [NOTE: Pope Francis’ Apostolic Letter, Motu proprio Aperuit illis, published on 30 September 2019, establishes that “the Third Sunday in Ordinary Time is to be devoted to the celebration, study and dissemination of the Word of God”.]

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ma. Paz Bawagan, AR
    Sr. Faith Niña Fuertes, AR
    Sis. Florida San Juan, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    Sis. Raymunda Co, SAR (Laray Chapter)
    Analyn Martinez (RAY-Valencia)

25
  • All day
    January 25, 2021

    SOLEMNITY OF THE CONVERSION OF ST. PAUL

    CSNT-Rs 50th (1971-2021) FOUNDING ANNIVERSARY Inclusive dates: January 25-30, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sis. Erlinda Casaje, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    Bro. Rodelio Gasparillo, SAR (Bacolod Chapter)
    Bro. Feddie Junsay, SAR (Bacolod Chapter)
    Joelle Maria Mendoza (RAY-Miranila)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Ma. Lucia Sagmit, AR

26
  • All day
    January 26, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Cristopher Maspara
    Sis. Henrietta Morales, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)

    ANNIVERSARY OF EPISCOPAL ORDINATION
    (2005-2021)
    Most Rev. Reynaldo Evangelista, D.D. (Diocese of Imus)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Margarita Zafra, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)

27
  • All day
    January 27, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Marilyn Cula, AR
    Sr. Remilyn Leonido, AR
    Sis. Evelyn Balingit, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Murita Jara, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

28
  • All day
    January 28, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Louie Gabinete

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Fernanda del Pilar, AR
    Sr. Ines Garcia, AR

29
  • All day
    January 29, 2021

    LAUNCHING OF HEART SOLIDARITY CAMPAIGN 2021 / Province of St. Ezekiel Moreno only

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Francisca Rojas, AR
    Sis. Lourdes Insigne, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Jona Mendoza (RAY-Miranila)

30
  • All day
    January 30, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Jonathan Caballero
    Sr. Angelica Fuentes, AR
    Sr. Pascualina Peral, AR
    Sis. Violeta Siozon, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Fedencia dela Criz, SAR (Brooke’s Point Chapter)
    Sis. Minerva Alcarde, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)

31
  • All day
    January 31, 2021

    4TH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

    68th WORLD LEPROSY DAY

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Josephine Ativo, AR
    Sis. Saturnina Antolihao, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    Lance Raven Lapinig (RAY-Talisay)

      

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