Pastor Ronald Molmisa set out to write “Lovestruck” for high school students with love woes. Now it’s a nine-book series and a parachurch ministry.
While ministering to high school students in Metro Manila in 2005, Ronald Molmisa found himself in recurring conversations with students about love and dating. Some students were serial daters who dated girlfriend after girlfriend. Others struggled to deal with their heartache after a break-up.
With sex and dating being taboo topics in the majority Catholic country, young Filipinos often turn to the internet or Western media to learn about love rather than the church. So Molmisa sought Christian resources to help his students.
At the time, Christian books about love from the United States—like Joshua Harris’s I Kissed Dating Goodbye—were popular, but Molmisa wanted a book that could speak to the lived experiences of Filipino students. While some Filipino authors had penned books on dating and love, he found them outdated and written in English, which many in the younger generation struggled to read. In everyday life, teens spoke, texted, and read articles in Taglish, a combination of Tagalog and English.
So Molmisa decided to write a book on relationships that would be both Bible-based and relevant to young people in the Philippines. With a background in research, he began conducting surveys and interviews to map out trends among Filipino teens. In 2010, he published Lovestruck: Love Mo Siya, Sure Ka Ba (Lovestruck: Are You Sure You Love Her?), which mixes comical anecdotes on love and relationships with biblical stories and pastoral wisdom.
The short 80-page book, which was written in Taglish, quickly became wildly popular among young people in the Philippines. Lovestruck went on to become a nine-book series, including titles like Lovestruck: Sexy Edition, on sexuality and pornography; Lovestruck: Sakit Edition, …