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Rosa

In 1992, When Rosa was 10 years old, her father, in one of his fits of madness as an alcoholic, tied her and her two brothers to a tree to burn them alive.

As the father went away to get matches, one of her brothers broke loose and shouted at her to run. She refused.

“I just stood there. After so much physical abuse, I told myself I would much rather die than live another day such as this,” Rosa said.

Her brothers had to drag her away from the place.

The pain began to stop only a year after, when Rosa was rescued by American Pastor Joe Rosmarino and his wife, Billie.

The Rosmarinos brought the young girl to their Calvary Chapel Home in Barangay Handumanan in Bacolod City. The place, through the years, has taken care of about 400 abandoned, abused and disabled children, and saw some of them growing up to become nurses, teachers and social workers working here and abroad.

"I am thankful to the Lord for giving me parents (the Rosmarinos) who have loved me as their own. I never had that before I met them," Rosa said.

Rosa said her father would hurt her mother and grandmother, and would often beat her and her nine other siblings.

Rosa graduated valedictorian from high school and cum laude in nursing from the Riverside College in Bacolod. She earned a second degree in education.

Now 26, Rosa is the school nurse at the Calvary Chapel Christian School, which provides education from preschool to high school, including special education, for the 150 children currently living at the home.

She also handles classes in Grades 2 and 3.

Rosa says, "I did not come to an orphanage, I came to a home. And the kind of love God has given us is stronger than any biological bond."