Greetings to all our supporters and friends in the Name of Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour. Once again, as I write this update, I do so from the Philippines. It is a joy to be here again, renewing friendships and making new ones.
PASTOR JONATHAN NAVACILLA As soon as I landed in Cebu on March 15th I felt as if I was home! I was able to stay with one of my “Filipino sons”, Pastor Jonathan Navacilla, for eight days and during that time it was a real joy to be present at his graduation from CGST (Cebu Graduate School of Theology). Jonathan graduated MA in Theology, Pastoral Studies (Cum Laude) which means his average marks were over 90% for the whole course. There have now been eight OBC former students who have continued their studies at CGST and who have done extremely well in their courses. Seven have become lecturers at OBC and Pastor Jonathan will continue his studies at CGST in the coming year. He seeks to be equipped to serve at OBC also, God willing.
It was also a pleasure for me to speak at both the morning and evening services at the Blessed Hope Christian Fellowship Church, where Jonathan is Pastor, on Sunday 20th March. The church building was full in the morning with enthusiastic people worshipping our Lord and Saviour. Please pray for the congregation here as once again the church has been served with an eviction notice. A descendant of the original land owner wants his land back. It is not only the church which is affected but a whole block of homes and small businesses. The matter has been before the courts for some years now.
PASTOR RENIEL COMAJEG Last prayer meeting night(Feb 18th) we prayed for the safe arrival of Pastor Reniel and Felany’s baby. Unbeknown to us, because of a modern technological malfunction, we did not know that the baby had arrived earlier that day. We can give thanks that Elisha Grant Comajeg arrived by a natural birth and not a “C section” as was expected. “Ishi” (Elisha’s nickname) spent several days in hospital but is now home enjoying the attention of his doting parents.
This week Pastor Reniel and Felany moved from the duplex they have been in into the one next door, where I lived while in the Philippines. Pastor Billy Comahig (Reniel’s brother) and his wife Joanne and family have moved from that duplex to a house in Cugman, nearer to Joanne’s mother. Pastor Billy will have to travel to OBC each day, a distance of about 6 kms.
ORO BIBLE COLLEGE To renew fellowship with my former “Dorm’ Boys” and to meet new dormitory occupants we had a “Coke and Donuts” evening on March 23rd. While I lived in CDO the boys were always welcome to come around, particularly on a Sunday evening, for coffee and cake or coke and donuts. We enjoyed an evening of singing and testimony and I shared a devotional message before we enjoyed the coke and donuts. Have you ever seen four dozen donuts disappear so fast?
OBC Graduation activities commenced in earnest on Thursday evening, with the Commissioning Service. Following a time of praise and worship and a very nice meal, seven young people were commissioned to go out on internship next semester to complete their practical requirements for their course and graduation in 2012. I was the guest speaker for the Commissioning Service this year. This year’s graduates were also recognised during the evening before their graduation on Friday 25th.
The Graduation was a special occasion in several ways. Nineteen “Kinder II” children graduated and will commence elementary school in June and five young women and one young man Graduated from OBC with AB Th. Mm Fe Medoza was recognised on her retirement as Office Manager of OBC after thirty-eight years of faithful service to the college and to her Lord. Rev Jeff and Mm Rhonda Walsh were recognised for their services to OBC, having been at the college for fifteen months in 2001/02 and then from 2005 until the present time. I was recognised as speaker for the Commissioning Service and for continued service and support of the college. It is a thrill to see these AB Th students graduate after four years of study and practical ministry, determined to serve their Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.
ROY ROCHA As you are praying at the ACMissioNZ Prayer Meeting tonight Pastor Roy Rocha will be preparing for his graduation tomorrow morning (April 2nd.) at 9.00am. Rev Jeff Walsh and I had hoped to go to the Graduation but this is no longer possible. Rev Jeff is not particularly well and needs to conserve his strength. I was able to meet with Roy in Manila the night I arrived in the Philippines.
I will be preaching at Hinaplanan, a small mountain town near Claveria this Sunday, April 3rd. This will bring back memories for members of the first work team as we visited there on the way back from Claveria and were given pomelo (a large pink grapefruit but sweeter)by Bruce Arnold’s mother-in-law. Each time she sees me she reminds me of that time.
Once again, thank you all for your such loyal support of the work here in the Philippines. It is always so much appreciated by the people here and they always comment on the support that we NZ’ers give them.
Pray for the Graduates and interns of OBC as they commence a new phase of their ministry.
Pray for the Walsh family, particularly Jeff, for health and strength, as they only have one month of service left here before returning to the USA, May 5th.
Pray for the faculty and staff of OBC as they prepare for the new school year, commencing in June.
Pray for the work of BPACCI and for Pastor Eleazar Comajig as he prepares for the Biennial Conference to be held early in May in Butuan.
Pray for Pastor Reniel Comajeg as he takes up new responsibilities at OBC and recommences study. Give thanks for the safe and uncomplicated arrival of Elisha, Reniel and Felany’s son.
Pray for the outreach work at Indahag and at Bueno Ora, near CDO.
Pray for the ministry and study of Pastor Jonathan Navacilla at Banilad, Cebu, and the church situation there and the outreach at Umapad with the children and adult Bible Study. Several of the group wish to be baptised but need their husbands’ permission.
Pray for Roy Rocha and his family as they have to move from the college campus and find alternative accommodation.
May the Lord bless you all as you continue to serve Him
In His precious name