More than a tragic story: Rowden, Hasset, Hisham, gone too soon
No parent should bury a child, but for it to happen to all your children is surreal. This happened to Lorelei Go Pangcoga of Misamis Occidental, Philippines. Lorelei had three talented, good-hearted sons and she lost each of them because of liver cirrhosis. The three boys were role models and their lives built on love, thankfulness, and faith. Why would a good God allow this to happen to good people? Did God not hear their prayers?
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Millions of Filipinos followed their story through “Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho” (KMJS) TV show. It featured the eldest son, marrying his girlfriend as he lay dying. The wedding of Rowden and Liezel viewed more than 15 Million times. Their story was featured in the true to life drama show, “Magpakailanman” aired on December 3, 2016.
Lorelei first lost her eldest son Rowden on June 11, 2014. He was 29 years old, blessed with an adorable 2-year-old daughter. It was a month ago when he was diagnosed with stage 4 liver cancer. His dying wish was to marry his one true love. Bedridden and weak, Leizel and Rowden were married at the hospital. He passed away less than 10-hours later after he said his marriage vows.
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It was a bittersweet scene that you’d hope would end there, but death continued to haunt the family. Next to go was the would-be celebrity chef, Hasset who had his own TV stint on the same network, a few years earlier. He had a promising career that ended with the same fate. He died on October 24, 2015, a few months after Rowden.
Diagnosed with cancer at an early stage, Lorelei’s youngest son Hisham or “Moi” went on a strict diet and regimen to avert the disease. They were optimistic. He was flown to Guangzhou China for cryosurgery. The procedure was promising, but only to find out that his cancer quickly went from Stage 1 to 4 in a matter of six months.
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What we can learn from Lorelei
Life on earth is but a vapor (James 4:13-17) and although Rowden, Hisham, and Hasset are gone, Christ has prepared a better place for them (Romans 6:8; 2 Corinthians 5:8; Revelation 21:4). Like the Biblical Job who also lost his children, Lorelei chose to dwell on God’s goodness and the promise of eternal life. She thanked the Lord for giving her a chance to have experienced having them. Lorelei’s tragedy reminds us that life on earth is temporary. What matters most is what awaits us, that which is eternal.
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