“Lead Me Lord” composer Arnel de Pano has recovered from COVID-19 and was sent home with a touching serenade by hospital personnel at the Marikina Valley Medical Center.
“Lead Me Lord”, the iconic inspirational song made popular by Basil Valdez in the 1990s and revived by Gary Valenciano a decade later, was sung by the medical team as De Pano was cleared from COVID-19 infection. Touched by the gesture, De Pano in return, prayed for them.
The frontliners of the Marikina Valley Medical Center serenaded the new COVID-19 survivor as a send-off as he was discharged from the hospital on April 2, 2020. The video was posted on April 3 by his wife Amy Avena De Pano.
“Arnel prays for his medical team, his angels in this tough journey to healing. Mabuhay po kayo, Dr. Jerome Santos and your medical team of frontliners!! God’s blessing, wisdom, empowerment and protection upon you all!!! posted Amy Avena de Pano on Facebook.
“That moment was actually a special moment for me. I did not expect it. They just decided really among themselves to send me off. That was the day I was being discharged. They decided to send me off with my own song. Hearing that from the people who took care of me really broke my heart. They’re the ones who work tirelessly and selflessly to get me back on the path of recovery and healing,” Arnel De Pano told Rico Hizon in an interview with CNN Philippines.
He said that hearing the song from them inspired him. “I just wanted to give it back to them. Lalo na ngayon, while I am recovering at home I will not forget the efforts they exerted to get me well. I am very very grateful and very very happy the credit that should be given to them is being given to them,” the composer added.
De Pano recounted how he was admitted to the hospital as a suspected pneumonia and typhoid patient.
“I was really in denial that I was a COVID case. When I learned that I was a COVID positive it really dampened my spirit. That’s the biggest thing that COVID patients are facing right now. It’s more of a mental, spiritual thing. More than anything, they get discouraged. Sometimes they lose the will to live, they lose the fight,” he shared.
“The thing is, our frontliners, they never give up. They will not allow anyone to just fade away and they want the patients to fight. They will do everything in their power to get us well but sometimes its the patient’s family who loses the will to live,” he shared.
CNN senior anchor Rico Hizon asked the composer to sing a few lines from the gospel song to help uplift the spirits of the people especially the patients and the frontliners in the battle against the virus. Arnel sang the chorus part of the song.
“You are my light
You’re the lamp upon my feet
All the time, my Lord
I need you there
You are my light
I can not live alone
Let me stay by Your guiding love
All through my life
All through my days
So, lead me, oh Lord
All my life”
“Arnel de Pano, Lead Me Lord has become a prayer of hope and healing for many people,” declared CNN’s Hizon.
His composition is now made an anthem for COVID-19 patients.
A Facebook post by Marikina Valley Medical Center on April 12 confirmed that De Pano was confined in the hospital on March 21 because of fever, difficulty of breathing, and overall feeling of weakness. On March 28, his swab test results came back positive.
“Through the excellent medical care provided by the Isolation Ward nurses of 6B and his team of physicians composed of Dr. Jerome Santos, Dr. Alex Calderon, Dr. Peter Señar and Dr. Gerardo Pura, he continuously improved. Before he was discharged last April 2, Mr De Pano was sent off by his nurses and Dr. Santos with a song that is close to his heart,” they wrote in the caption.
“Hangad naming ang inyong mabilis na paggaling, Mr. De Pano. And to all the people who were part of this amazing story of God’s mercy and faithfulness, may God bless you and protect you always,” they added.
In a second video post, Arnel de Pano thanked God for the concern, healing, and protection. He also prayed for the protection and healing of the patients and the frontliners.
“Bless their families as well. Huwag mo po silang pabayaang manghina. Bless my workers, my frontliners, my angels. Thank you very much! Amen!”
Many artists have also dedicated healing, inspirational and gospel songs to people affected by the virus.
Singer-composer Jamie Rivera posted a video on social media of her new version of “Heal Our Land” as the Inspirational Diva of the Philippines reminded Filipinos of the power of prayer at this time of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Asia’s Songbird Regine Velasquez and husband singer-songwriter Ogie Alcasid posted a video of them singing “The Lord Is Our Savior” as an offering to people affected by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
Mr. Pure Energy Gary Valenciano made a home studio recording of his OPM classic “Take Me Out Of The Dark” as a prayerful song in the midst of fear, anxiety, and uncertainty brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic – and the song was embraced by the online world.
SEND CHEERS in the comments below to COVID-19 survivor Arnel De Pano and the hospital “angels” at Marikina Valley Medical Center for the inspirational story of healing to help uplift the Filipino spirit in these trying times.
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