“MERCY,” a song about God’s grace for victims of typhoon “Yolanda,” will be the official theme song of the papal visit to the Archdiocese of Palo in Leyte on Jan. 17.

Composed by London-based band Ooberfuse, the song highlights God’s love, compassion, and the survivors’ restoration from massive devastation, said Cherrie Anderson, the band’s Tacloban-born vocalist.

“The lives of ordinary Filipinos bear scars and emotional wounds from the devastation of typhoon Yolanda. ‘Mercy’ tries to emphasize that in spite of the worst tragedies, God’s eternal mercy and compassion will sustain us through our darkest hours,” Anderson said during the launching of the song last Jan. 9 at the Century Park Hotel.

Anderson recalled the night during the onslaught of typhoon Yolanda, when she couldn’t do anything except offer prayers for the safety of her relatives in Tacloban. This inspired her band to emphasize God’s embrace in times of tragedies and weakness.

Ooberfuse will perform the song live on Jan. 17 during one of Pope Francis’ encounters with typhoon survivors.

The Pope will offer Holy Mass at the Tacloban Airport. Then, he will have lunch with 30 Yolanda survivors at Gonzagahaus, the Archbishop’s Residence in Palo.

“It is a measure of Pope Francis’ real concern for the poor that he has chosen to offer direct consolation by visiting thousands of families,” Anderson said.

The original song is in English, but the band has put together Filipino and remix versions.

The band is comprised of Anderson, Hal St. John, and producer Roland Faber.

Aside from Mercy, the other papal visit official theme songs are Jamie Rivera’s “We Are All God’s Children” and “Shepherd’s Love,” which was composed by Fr. Kim Margallo. Angeli Mae S. Cantillana


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