Bagong Simula sa Bayan ni Juan

Breaking News

For other news and information, scroll the links found on the sidebar. Links to other relevant sites and media blogs are located on the lower right portion. - RAFS76

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

New face of hope for HIV and AIDS

By Jocelyn Uy
Last updated 07:48am (Mla time) 08/08/2007

MANILA, Philippines -- This man of God found life and love despite a dreaded malady.

South African Reverend Christo Greyling was a hopeful 23-year-old seminarian who was to marry his girlfriend in six months when he tested positive for HIV, a retrovirus that can lead to the deadly acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS).

It was 1987, and South Africa, which then registered a less than one-percent prevalence of HIV, had yet to acknowledge the creeping epidemic.

Greyling thought he had lost not only Liesl, the love of his life, but also his dream of becoming a pastor who would inspire people with more than the usual songs and sermons.

But 19 years later, he is alive, happily married, and a father of two healthy daughters --Anika and Mia.

He is also the new face of hope for HIV/AIDS victims, who continue to suffer in silence.

“God has an excellent sense of humor. Indeed, I turned out to be a kind of reverend different from [what I wanted to be]. I am an HIV-positive reverend,” said the 43-year-old pastor during a dialogue Tuesday with various government agencies, churches and media groups in Quezon City.

Greyling and his wife are in the country for the four-day launch of an HIV/AIDS awareness campaign of the World Vision Development Foundation-Philippines.

The program taps Philippine churches and faith-based organizations in starting community-based HIV programs to help avert a “hidden and growing” incidence of AIDS and HIV in the country.

Continue reading here.