The sound of sirens on the street usually brings unease and fear. But when the INCGiving volunteers from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania heard fire engine sirens approaching, we couldn’t help but cheer, knowing that their guests of honour had arrived.
“The local congregation of Philadelphia prepared a program intended to somehow bring a smile to the men in uniform. After all, we know and recognize their sacrifices to keep the community safe and they also extend their help to those who are in need.” Brother Matt Karl Talens, Resident Minister, Local Congregation of Philadelphia.
The guests were welcomed with warm smiles and handshakes as they enjoyed the musical presentations and the food that was prepared. We presented them with certificates of appreciation for their work. Afterwards, we took them on a guided tour of our chapel and to watch a video created by our children to thank them. In the hallways, they saw a photo exhibit showcasing the brief history of the Iglesia Ni Cristo in Philadelphia.
We took pictures with our guests of honor in the photo booth and in front of the fire trucks. Both kids in age and at heart got the chance to inspect the trucks up close. It was a real treat to see these vehicles in comfort and safety with no emergency trouble nearby!
“It is nice that people reach out to us. They don’t have to give us money or food, but still recognition of – we wake up at 3am for calls and not everyone is getting up. We’re the guys who are always showing up for calls and stuff like that. So with that being said we thank you, you know, for appreciating us.”- Matthew McCormick, volunteer firefighter, Aston Township Fire Department.
Contributed by: Sister Jocelyn Bandolon and Brother Abraham Evangelista, Philadelphia