February 7, 2013

  • Missions Trip to Cebu, Phillippines

    Human existence is about love. We seek love in all it’s forms, it is embedded deep in our psyche and nature… because He first created us to be loved by Him, to love Him, and then to love others.

    In all my ugliness, darkness & sin, God still loved this girl with a furious love. Through people, prophecies and other miraculous means, He steadfastedly wooed me back to His side. How incomprehensible, the thought that a perfect almighty God, maker of heavens and earth, could ever want a close relationship with a fallen soul like me. I am wholly undeserving! But when love and blessings are lavished upon you freely by grace, how could you possibly not feel the joyful compulsion to pass some love on?


      I made my way to Cebu Island with a group of 13 friends from my Christian community :)

    We worked together with a local church and missions group.

    They were lovely people with a heart for God! We brought the fire of revival to them as there was great outpouring of the holy spirit during our worship sessions and as we prayed and ministered to the workers.

    For the first time, I was thrown into the deep waters of a third world country. Although the “chalet” we stayed at was considered quite liveable and relatively clean, it was still a drastic change from what I’m normally used to. Cockroaches and a host of other assorted creepy crawlies ran amok all over the room; hot water was a luxury we did not have :X

    Yet, when we walked around the villages and towns daily to interact with locals, we encountered much worse. Faced with abject poverty and impoverished living conditions, it was a wake-up call that hey, how insignificant in comparison are our complaints that we don’t have the latest Chanel bag, that our public transport sucks, that our homes are too small?

    I was truly shamed and humbled. I felt immensely blessed. I felt even more driven to help them.

    Because after all, I believe we are blessed to be a blessing to others!

    One thing that struck me – the kids don’t need expensive homes, nice clothes, cars, or iPads to live with smiles on their faces. In fact, they seem happier, friendlier and more spirited than our city kids!

    THE BAIT: The guys in our team were adept at attracting the children with their balloon twisting, haha.
    After which, we would share with them about Jesus, acting out skits and pray for them.

    Our regular meals consisted of fried chicken (omg! my arteries!) and quick meals at the Philippine’s own rampant fast food chain Jollibee.

    The adventurous (and in my opinion, insane) amongst us plucked up the courage to try Philippine’s delicacy (in my opinion, something best eaten in the 10th level of hell) called Balut.

    The “17″ indicates how many days old the fertilized duck egg is. 17 is apparently the most ideal at which point it’s known as  balut sa puti (“wrapped in white”).

    I literally screamed and immediately dashed away from our table when I saw it. I practically closed my eyes while taking the pictures. That’s how terrifying and disgusting it was to me. Would YOU dare try it?

    Alright, let me soothe your traumatized nerves…. Here’s an adorable little girl I fell in love with :)

    Isn’t she lovely? What a smile of sunshine!

     Let’s talk about transport. Thailand has their tuk tuks, and Philippines has a curious thing called the… Jeepney.

    Filipinos clearly have a penchant for loud colors and crazy designs, perhaps to cheer up the dreariness of their everyday lives. These buses or vans that make up the backbone of the country’s chaotic mass transport system. They’re locally assembled using second-hand truck engines and transmission systems imported from Japan. We rode in them all the time! I found them peculiar and rather funny, yet pretty fun to travel around in.

    Melancholic cool shot of our leader Jeff and his guitar.
    He is probably having an intimate conversation with God here, lol.

    We also got around by boat. Cebu, with it’s white sandy beaches, is a popular resort destination. What a pleasure sailing into the gorgeous blue ocean, breathing in the salty sea breeze and singing songs of worship together! 

     We visited a few different high schools to reach out to the youths, many got saved and healed!

    I shared my testimony publicly for the first time, all glory to Him.



    Before we left, the students all clamoured to take photos with us and asked for our Facebook pages; they were so sweet! 

    A cell phone photo one of the girls took and tagged on Facebook. x

    We would hold evangelistic night rallies in public basketball courts. In the day, we’d spend some time giving out flyers telling the villagers to come join us.

    Love the little children :)

     Praise God that turnout to the rallies were always great, rain or shine.

    Praying for both young & old to receive Jesus, for healings and restoration :)

    Cebu City by night

    This elderly lady lives in a wooden shack in the forest.

    Through a translator we heard snippets of her life story and ministered to her. God is so good, He healed her legs, she could walk much better after!

    Helping to reconcile families

    According to nurses and mothers at the local health centers we spoke to, there is a lack of funding, facilities, medicines and resources. Hospitals are scarce and health care is often too expensive for them to afford. With resigned despair and a tinge of anger, they tell us that their government is corrupt.

     While we brought donations of money, clothes and books to them, that’s just looking at the trees. To bring about real long-lasting, positive change in the lives of these people, we have to also aim for the forest. In the bigger scheme of things, the welfare of a nation is largely dependent on good governance, good public policies and leaders with integrity. It is my wish that I could one day help impact these poor countries in a more powerful way by starting at the top.

    Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” Matthew 19:14


    Starting the day with some crazy fellowship over breakfast :)

    Sightseeing! Bagacay Point Lighthouse

    This lighthouse stands at a towering height of 72 feet in an uphill area overlooking the splendid Mactan Channel. The landmark was built in 1904 by virtue of an executive order issued on July 28, 1903 by William Howard Taft, who came to the country in 1900 as president of the Philippine Commission and later appointed US governor general.


     Going on this missions trip was not only incredibly eye-opening, it was an adventure of a lifetime and allowed God to prune me as I stepped out of my comfort zone. It was an opportunity to grow and let Him use me to make His love known. I further discovered my identity in Christ, got equipped, and became empowered to advance God’s kingdom by sharing and living out the gospel to the poor and under privileged.
    What other missions veterans told me is true – you go to bless others but you end up being more blessed as well.

    I look forward to my next missions someday soon!

    ♥ Dawn


Comments (31)

  • Wow, this is very nice Ms. Yang. I’ve always wondered how Singaporean bloggers would blog about my country. I thought the possibility of you posting fun activities in, say, Boracay has higher probability than, say, a visit to Vigan or even Manila. But this surprised me! Ain’t our kids here lovely? :) It’s also not difficult to conduct Christian missions here. People here just love taking part in activities especially if organized by non-locals. :)

    I’m still amazed that I found the name of my country in your page. Such a shame you were not able to visit the other side of Philippines (the “developing country”), but I believe that the beauty of the Philippines lies within her simple people with simple joys anyway.

    Not to mention you look way prettier in your pictures here being casual and simple. (Of course I may be biased heeeheee)

    And yeah, Balut is scary.

  • I have found new respect for Dawn after this blog post. Sometimes, it’s the giving that counts more than the receiving. You look no less gorgeous as Singapore’s hottest blogger even in the slums! Even I dare not embark on such mission tasks under such living conditions, weather etc, but I must say I take my hats off to you as you have given me the inspiration to take on the challenge. I am definitely going to try my hands at mission trips and have to thank Dawn Yang for giving me the motivation.

    BTW, it’s “abject” not object poverty… hehe lol :)

  • Just chanced upon this blog today. Interesting account of your journey and service to God. One thing that irked me though was the fertilised duck egg.

    Hmmm..shouldn’t love and respect for fellow humans and the almighty also extend to love for animals? Wonder why (some) people would ever support such acts of blatant animal cruelty whilst participating in the sacred mission of spreading the word of God, putting aside philosophical arguments about whether the fertilised ducks ‘feel’ pain or otherwise.

    Anyways, really well documented post.


  • One of your best blog posts thus far! Your readers need more entries like this! Love!

    Btw, its quite belated though, since you had went in Feb last year? Hehehe.

  • @Josh - 
    When living in poverty, do you think people care about animal “cruelty” more than what they could afford to eat ? In what way was there “cruelty” to begin with when the meat you eat was obviously butchered and slaughtered from the animal before you get to enjoy it … just that you don’t see it before your eyes.

    Btw Dawn, your blog title should be one l in Philippines. Well done on your mission trip. Pleasantly surprised coming from Hottest Singapore Blogger while other bloggers are obsessed with bitching and greedy for fame and sponsorships ….

  • It was nice to see a charitable side to you rather than just seeing you at a party with your legs out! You can inspire many young people to do more good, so well done! xx

  • All these pictures really touched my heart, especially those with the little kids and their big smiles. I’ve always wanted to go for mission trips, but it seems hard because I am the only Christian in the family and my parents are a Buddhist. But I do believe I’ll be able to go for these mission trips as well one day. Faith is what that keeps us going day by day. Thank you for sharing and also those pictures, Dawn. It really inspires me.

    Celyx Lim

  • @Glada - 

    Well argued but a few things

    Point 1: I am vegan (since the age of 6) so I practice what I preach. No killing of animals in my diet.

    Point 2: Everyone knows that eating vegetables IS more sustainable than consuming meat. Eating animals is not going to alleviate food shortage. Vegetables are also generally most cost effective.

    Point 3: The blog post above seems to allude to the fact that the mission trip participants were themselves enjoying this delicacy. Were they homeless and poverty stricken as well?

    I have nothing against meat eaters and I respect their life decisions but that image of the fertilised duck egg was a shuddering example of the current state of human compassion towards animals.

  • @Josh - 

    Reply to Point 1:
    I respect your belief and dietary practice.

    Reply to Point 2:
    Not sure how true your statement is but I’ve heard people saying that sometimes vegetables cost more than meat. Meat have vitamins and nutritions that vegetables don’t provide.

    Reply to Point 3:
    The participants did not necessarily enjoy what was served to them. No, they were not homeless and poverty-stricken but they certain lived in that environment where they were left with little or no choice but to eat what was served.

    The Bible is clear that ALL food including meat are blessings from God and nothing is to be rejected but to be received with thanksgiving (1 Timothy 4:4). A Christian is free to be a Vegan or meat eater. Christ said it’s not what goes into your mouth that matters as it will eventually come out, but what matters more is what comes out of our mouth, that is, what we speak.


  • @Glada - 

    Well I agree with your point of respecting meat and non-meat eaters, but I think the Bible has been sadly misinterpreted to serve our selfish self-fulling needs. As a Christian it pains me to see the majority of members from our community believe that murdering an animal is our right and a granted blessing. To me, Animals were not food in the first place they are our fellow beings. It is bewildering that one would use religion to justify what is clearly an inhumane act ( in response to the duck eggs)

    And do you honestly believe that all they had to eat were the duck eggs but nothing else?

    Anyways I respect your viewpoints.

    God bless

  • @Josh - 
    It also pains me to see the bondage some Christians put themselves in due to lack of understanding of scriptures. I’m sure you have your own unique interpretation to what Apostle Paul has to say in Romans 14 – “One person’s faith allows them to eat anything, but another, whose faith is weak, eats only vegetables….. Whoever eats meat does so to the Lord, for they give thanks to God; and whoever abstains does so to the Lord and gives thanks to God.”

    What about 1 Corinthians 10:25 – “Eat anything sold in the meat market without raising questions of conscience, for, “The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it.”

    You should also know that Jesus ate fish (Mark 8) as well as passover meal that consisted of lamb (Mark 14:12 – “On the first day of the Festival of Unleavened Bread, when it was customary to sacrifice the Passover lamb, Jesus’ disciples asked him, “Where do you want us to go and make preparations for you to eat the Passover?” ”).

    Guess what? Jesus not only never stopped His disciples from “murdering” the lamb but joined them in the feast !

  • @Glada - 

    Sorry but being an academician in philosophy and the arts I’ve got to tell you that those quotes were based on a very specific historical context under particular social conditions. Put in very simple basic terms, in a quest to spread the message that the world was God’s creation those actions were symbolically put forth (e.g. eating lamb) to show the people that there is God in every being and material thing. While those events did indeed happen, it is the SYMBOLIC significance that Christians are supposed to take from it. Not the literal meaning, which is what most people grasp on to remain guilt free. An inconvenient truth for some but it is truth in my eyes.

    Vegetarianism is not bondage but LIBERATION. ;)

  • To Josh, you said “To me, Animals were not food in the first place they are our fellow beings.”

    “To me”…. I assume is not according to what the Bible teaches but only according “to you”.

    From the Old Testament, God often required the sacrifice of lambs. I wonder from which source you found your teaching that animals are only “our fellow beings” and not food to be eaten.

    Except for food sacrificed to idols and in pagan temples, I am not aware of God forbidding us eating meat.

  • lets hope after administering your help to these people, you didn’t come back to a swanky hotel with fresh sheets.

    but kudos to you, i admire the fact that you went to a place of poverty even to experience and see an ounce of what these people are going through in their lives.

  • @visitor - 

    I never said God forbids meat eating. The Old Testament was written during the period of the great flood. Animals with the life of blood were not to be eaten but animals already consumed by those floods were to be a source of nourishment for those in hunger. In that instance it seems logical since killing for food was never the agenda.

    I pity the superficial people who read the bible and understand its teachings in literal terms. The bible is so much more than that.

    I have enough of this discussion. We will all agree to disagree.

    God Bless

  • Praise the Lord! That was a nice surprise – may you be used by Him for His glory.

  • The mission trip was in 2011 Feb, not 2012.. https://twitter.com/DawnYang1/statuses/95353181701283840

    Blog more frequently dawn~

  • Indeed it’s more blessed to give than to receive!!!!! Us Singaporeans really have to count our blessings and hopefully more will be like you, stepping out of their comfort zone to help the less fortunate… be it overseas or here at home..

    Thanks Dawn, you’ve inspired many of us!

  • I’ve been wanting to go for a mission trip for long time but was too afraid as these are third world countries and we are so used to be pampered in comfortable life in S’pore. Though this is a delayed blog post, it was worth sharing as it’s not the usual high-class events Dawn always involves in. It was amazing she was able to squeeze in this mission trip in-between running a busy boutique, advertorials, events, shows etc.. Lazy people will often remain lazy while active ones like Dawn cannot stay idle for even one day! I am now checking out my church website to see where I can go for a mission trip. :)

  • Happy chinese new year Dawn! I loved this blog post! Pray God will prosper you in all areas of your life!

  • What’s delicacy to some communities is nauseating to others… Many foreigners can’t stand the smell and taste of durians that Singaporeans love !!

    Anyway better late than never. I am glad DY wrote about this trip. Happy Lunar New Year !

  • When I first saw you, I thought you were beautiful.

    As time went by, I realized your depth of intelligence and class, I thought you were more beautiful.

    More time went by, I was impressed by your courage to regularly and openly share about your faith to the public, I thought you were very beautiful.

    After reading this post, I think you are the most beautiful girl in the world!

  • Stay COOL Dawn! You look awesome in the slums and on the red carpet :) Admire your guts baby. Even royalties sometimes roll up their sleeves to do dirty work but not for days like this. It’s tough but you did it. So proud of you. I am so looking forward to give this a try myself :) Sick of reading other blogs where bloggers only boast about sponsored trips and products with nothing to boast about what they did for society. So when and where is your next mission trip ?

  • You write very well Dawn… Always nice to read your blog posts.
    Am also amazed to read about the instant healing. Always hear about christian mission trips and rallies resulting in a lot of instant healings and miracles… God has a big heart for poor people!

  • Of all celebrities, I least expected Spore’s hottest blogger to be doing this. Hope you never quit blogging. I will cry …. :(

  • If Dawn Yang quits blogging, Singapore and Asia will lose one of the best and most original bloggers. Totally unamused with some other insane bloggers who will stoop to anything for attention.

    Singapore female bloggers are rather desperate and pathetic who will imitate one another to throw unnecessary juvenile tantrums at the slightest provocation just to increase blog hits. I never once saw Dawn Yang doing that even with all the insults that were heaped upon her before.

  • Lovely pictures. Reminds me of my backpacking days in South East Asia.

  • OMG Dawn! I always check your blog because of your lifestyle posts. But I never knew you’d ever do something like this. I am from the Philippines and I never thought you would ever grace our country with your kindness. Because of the people saying so many negative things about you, I used to think you were just another rich and pretty girl who goes around partying. Now after this post, you totally changed my impression on you. You are so kind! And knowing how hot it is here in our country but you still managed to smile in the photos, I was really impressed. Thank you so much! I felt like I was reading a Filipino blog while scrolling down the photos. Thank you and may God bless you more. :) -Kristine

  • Unexpected that you would write this kind of missionary entry. I actually read through and all the words and feeling really inspires us a lot.

    The other side of Dawn. Love this entry very much! Good luck to you!


  • If fried chicken is their regular meal, then they need lots of prayers for high cholesterol! Maybe that gooey duckling is not such a bad alternative after all!!!

Post a Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *