A woman in her late 30s, known to MAP and its missionary workers for about 6 years now, from the humble Abellen Ayta tribe of Western Tarlac, is Leah Morales. She’s a very notable person, with curious knowing eyes, ever flourishing smile, and a busy body like no other among the Abellens.
She’s a loving wife and a mother of three- Duking, Macliz, and Tono; especially to her eldest Duking, who had meningitis during his early years, survived it, however; is now mentally challenged. On the hand, her other two children is excelling in their studies, these being a strong testimony of patience, and love.
Julius and Paul (MAP nurses) first met ‘Ate Leah’ in the house of Ambo, MAP’s first contact in Tangan-Tangan, Maamot Tarlac about 6 years ago, she was eager to meet the new visitors and was currently attending church and Bible studies in their local Methodist church. Who would have known that, that would be the beginning of her untiring devotion of assisting MAP nurses in their endeavors of reaching out to the Abellens in bringing Jesus Christ, while also educating the people with primary health. Be it regularly bringing cooked meals, crops, fowl, coal, rice, and calling her fellow tribesmen to gather for classes.
She was introduced to the gospel again thru the help of Julius and Oliver, 2 years later. She testifies often during small group discussions about her love for the Word of God, as she was also one of the few who are able to read and write. At the culmination of the MAP’s primary health care program, Ate Leah became one of the Family Health Worker graduates, able to use and read a sphygmomanometer, weighing scale, thermometer, and identify danger signs and early signs of common diseases in the community.
During one of our more recent visits of MAP to Tangan-tangan, we arrived in the area learning that Ate Leah was out, hunting and planting in the mountains. We waited two days to say hi and talk to her and her family. Later that evening, she was literally running to the health center; worrying we’d already gone back. She was chatty as usual, telling story after story in a very good kind of high, truly enthusiastic that we were able to visit. She told us that she looked forward to MAP visits every month, and that she would wash all the beddings to make sure they were clean the moment the nurses and doctors arrive.
Her testimony is striking, in the community her family served to be light and salt. They lived following His footsteps. Ate Leah did her best to preserve her testimony, sensitive to the urging of the Holy Spirit, staying kind and impartial, and faithful. As Christians are called to be lights on a hill, she was steadfast and continues to be so.
by: Dr. Precious Melad, MD