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Sick OFW goes home with $70k goodwill gift from employer

06 April 2021

By Daisy CL Mandap 

Madayag shares her story at HK Airport just before her flight Monday

On being told that she had a rare bacterial infection that had affected up to 80% of her lungs and threatened to end her 20 years of work as a domestic helper, 55-year-old Corazon Madayag chose not to be despondent.

Instead, she looked at the brighter side of things, including what an amazed doctor had told her -  that the bacteria had affected only her lungs and liver, but did not spread throughout her body, which could have put her life at grave risk.

Madayag, a devout Christian who regularly attends the Jesus the Living God church, also turned to prayer, not just for herself but also for the people she cares about, including her elderly employers.


But the blessings she reaped from taking a positive attitude to the challenges that were thrown her way were much more than what she had dared hope for.

After being discharged from hospital, her kindly employers, aged 84 and 79 years old, booked her in a hotel for 10 days so she could recuperate fully before her scheduled flight home yesterday, Apr 5.

Then, days before she was due to return to her home in Quezon City to take the six months’ rest prescribed by her doctor, she received a most unexpected blessing.


Her employers, whom she had looked after for four years and five months, surprised her with a most generous going-away gift of roughly $70,000 (Php434,000), which was far more than she had hoped to get.

They also promised to re-hire her if she’s given a clean bill of health after her six-month rest in the Philippines. 

Madayag gives testimony at the JLG service on Sunday, presided over by Bishop Vallo

In a conversation with her spiritual adviser Bishop Gerry T. Vallo at the airport shortly before taking her flight back to Manila, Madayag said she knew she could not claim long service pay as a matter of right as she had not served her employers for a minimum of five years as required by law.

Pindutin para sa detalye

But what she got was not just payment for long service, but her salary for an entire year. She was also given generous pay for unclaimed annual leave. Then, during her last conversation with her employers, she said she was given an extra $10,000 for her 16-year-old daughter.

Madayag had a simple explanation for her good fortune, “God touched my employers’ heart. Ginamit ng Diyos ang aking mga amo para mabiyayaan ako.” (God used my employers to bless me).

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Though overwhelmed by their generosity, Madayag said she had always had a good relationship with her employers, who treated her like family. She responded in kind, by always praying for them and anticipating their needs.

Give and take lang yan. Kapag sinabi ng amo mo na hindi ka muna lalabas, pagbigyan mo kasi lahat ng hinihiling mo ay binibigay (din) nila,” she said. (It’s all a matter of give and take. If your employer asks you not to take your day off, give way because they also grant your requests).


At saka lagi-lagi ko silang pinapanalangin kasi iyon ang nararapat, iyon ang importante.” (Also, I always pray for them because that’s just right, that’s what is important).

To those who are not blessed with employers who are as kind and generous, she has a simple advice: “Panalangin lang, madadala yan sa panalangin,” she said. (Just pray, everything could be achieved with prayer).

Bishop Vallo explained why Madayag was moved to share her good fortune.

Tunghayan ang isa na namang kwentong 

Hindi natin ito ginawa para ipagpunyagi kung ano man ang natanggap niya kundi nais nating ibahagi na kung tama ang iyong ginagawang pagtatrabaho ng iyong employer na walang kapalit na hangad, ang Diyos na ang kumikilos. Hinihipo ng Panginoon ang puso ng amo.”

(We are not doing this to boast about what she had received but to share with others that if you work properly in your employer’s house without waiting for anything in return, God will take action. Our Lord will touch the employer’s heart).

Bishop Vallo also said the story comes with a message that there are still a lot of good-hearted employers out there so migrant workers should take heart. Doing good and being good will always be rewarded.

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