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In a photo taken prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, Cynthia (left), an elderly unbaptized publisher who is deaf and blind, uses tactile signing to communicate with a sister in her congregation

MAY 12, 2020

Congregation Supports Deaf and Blind Sister During Pandemic

Congregation Supports Deaf and Blind Sister During Pandemic

Sister Cynthia Pablo is a 64-year-old unbaptized publisher who attends the Panghulo Sign-Language Congregation in the Philippines. She is deaf and blind and is of limited means. She lives with non-Witness relatives in a dense part of Valenzuela City. Though Cynthia’s situation presents many challenges, which have been exacerbated by the pandemic, the brothers in her congregation are taking steps to provide for her.

Using his motorcycle, Brother Ilumin transports clean clothes and relief supplies to Cynthia

Because of her age, Cynthia is considered more vulnerable to COVID-19. The pandemic has caused water shortages in her area, making it difficult for her to wash her clothes. Before the health crisis, sisters in her congregation helped Cynthia with the task, but current government restrictions have made this impossible.

Brother Walter Ilumin, an elder in her congregation, obtained a special permit from the local government, which allows him to leave his house to care for Cynthia. This permit is granted only to those who are rendering essential services. In addition to washing her clothes, Walter also brings food and other necessary items to her. He strictly follows the local guidelines and all government directives, including wearing a mask and other protective gear and washing his hands frequently.

To thank the brothers and sisters, Cynthia records short video messages that express her appreciation. Brother Ilumin then shares the videos with the congregation.

Cynthia participating in the preaching work before the pandemic

This same elder also travels to her home to interpret the congregation videoconference meetings by means of tactile signing. With this help, Cynthia is able to comment regularly during the congregation Watchtower Study. Her participation in the meetings during this challenging time encourages others who are tied in.

We are confident that Jehovah is pleased to see his people provide comfort and relief to one another ‘all the more so as we see the day drawing near.’—Hebrews 10:24, 25.