“Love your enemy.”

Marysel D. Alcontin

Marysel D. AlcontinArtist Name
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By: Zijing Fang & Yingqi Wang

HONG KONG (2019) – Leaving two teenage sons behind in the Philippines, 38-year-old single mother Marysel D. Alcontin chose to work as a domestic helper in Hong Kong to earn a higher salary that could help her family. 


Before her move, she hadn’t worked until her husband’s sudden death in 2005 - three years after their marriage. His accidental death, she said, drove her to contemplate suicide. However, the responsibility as a mother of two made her reconsider, she said. Marysel was working as an assistant secretary in the country’s capital of Manila when she decided to move to Hong Kong.


Although her employer sometimes makes her life difficult and the child she watches has physically attacked her, Marysel said she chooses not to blame them. Marysel said she prefers to remain optimistic about their behaviour and tries her best to meet their needs.


Her Christian religious belief has grown stronger since she moved to Hong Kong, she said, as she devotes most of her spare time to prayer meetings, including singing holiday carols and benediction. 


She said her religious devotion gives her the strength to overcome difficulties and live a better life. “Love your enemy as you love yourself,” Marysel said. “If you show them love, even [if] they hurt you, they will change.”