The Philippines - 2011

62 Days 75 Preachings in 2011
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Thursday Feb 10th a fresh young team of pastors returned with me to Bangued, the Mt Zion Sanctuary where they had assembled their youth group for our program. It was quite exciting to see the Spirit working among these shy young people! Everyone in the church except our team was slain in the Spirit! The Pastor was elated and the “kids” (college age) very excited!

Friday was “formal Valentine’s Day Celebration at Elohim Community Church in Santa Maria. Many of the youth brought “dates” for the dress-up evening program, an annual event for the church to reach out. I spoke on the origins of Valentine’s Day and relief we were not going to actually sacrifice a goat or dog for the evening meal. The kids enjoyed the lighthearted approach. There were games hosted by Cholo (Marbens son) and Jenna with prizes of candy. Then Dr. Michelle (Marbens daughter) gave a serious talk on dating, the body changes of young people and dangers of careless sex! Dinner was hotdogs, noodles, kabobs, with snacks of popcorn and pop. The evening was great success!

Saturday I taught a class to the young pastors and then rested for Sunday, a three service challenge.

The shopkeeper’s service at 4:30 was on Last Supper. At 9 we went south to Bangan in LeUnion Province to an Elohim outreach church, a very small bamboo hut situated within the block walls of the eventual church building. Following the morning service we had lunch at a house and then watched as the youth transformed the bamboo hut! They removed its front wall; added large bamboo rafters out to the street, covered the extension with a large tarp, and actually tripled the size of the structure. Adding chairs, balloons, candles and decorations, they created a “Love for Jesus” theme for their valentine outreach to the local youth. The Santa Maria band played, Bangan youth did skits and musicals, I preached, and it was quite the talent show! Many visitors expressed interest in coming back to the church!

Monday was wash day and packing for trip to return up the mountain Tuesday. Then late Monday the trip was postponed so Tuesday we visited Barangay San Pedro, a small church in the country. The local pastor was not expecting a big program so did not advertise it and was clearly embarrassed. All 8 locals were slain in the spirit and we had a good time despite the numbers. (Our team was 12 people!)

Wednesday the Pastor visited and bid us to give him another opportunity at his brother-in-laws church in Tangoe. We did a visited there Wednesday. The service was held in a tobacco storage area and well attended but the crowd was very hard to minister to. Later I learned this area had a pastor assassinated 2 years ago in the pulpit and the other 3 churches folded. Since then, one family, our hosts, has continued service. But locals are afraid to become church goers. It was an interesting evening! Snacks offered were brownies, candy and coke so I abstained.

Thursday we ventured up the mountains again with a team of 6 plus Marben and me. Marben brought the newest class of Pastors this trip but they were too shy and inexperienced and stumbled through their first service at Tiogan near San Emilio. Marben eventually led the singing. I preached my testimony. Many were affected deeply. We had several dramatic healings including one man taken to the hospital the next day to confirm for his family he CAN walk!

We stayed the night at Tiogan in a luxurious home owned by a family in Hong Kong! The next morning we journeyed up to the mission church at the precipice of San Emilio and waited until four other young Pastors arrived via motorbike to help the team. We were now eleven as we loaded into a Jeepney and took the two hour drive up dirt roads on the mountain to Luba. This is a rebel city I visited in 2009! The Pastors were excited to see us arrive. His wife immediately took an ax to two chickens and began cooking over the campfire. The evening service I spoke on my shooting episode in Nigeria and being rescued by the Obo Queen. I related it to the 23rd Psalm. (The pastor requested this message as he has read my first book!) The response was awesome and most were slain including many children, not my preference! I simply ask The Spirit to bless and hold them safe unless they are about 15 years old but still they were zapped!

Saturday we stayed a second night. I showed “Passion of Christ” and “That The World May Know” videos in the daytime. The local pastor was astounded when Marben told him we had visited Dakay and Amti villages 2 weeks ago. He could hardly believe I had made that climb. He said Luba Church was started about 57 by Marbens grandfather. He was a converted and became pastor and then in 60 they hiked from Luba to Dakay, a day’s journey, and evangelized it. They built the church there. He is 76 so cannot make the trip now so I showed him my pictures!

Saturday evening service was packed and I taught on Acts 14 and 16, the call of Timothy as a Disciple. Many came under the spirit and it lasted two hours from the time I started anointing until the move began to wane, according to the young pastors. We had nearly everyone under the Spirit when the young pastor team came and asked to be anointed and prayed for as well! No longer needing people to stand behind those prayed for, I anointed them as well. Marben said he never saw anything quite like it. We brought them back by worship songs and closed in prayer around midnight.

Sunday morning service began with the local Pastor talking about Caleb and all we have done for his church. Marben just smiles and didn’t translate but clearly they are very enamored with our gifts. I gave him $100 US dollars for finishing the front wall of the church on Saturday. He pulled it out of his pocket and gave it to the church treasurer in front of everyone on Sunday morning as if it were thousands of dollars! The people cheered as the treasurer took our modest gift. He listed many of the people who have received clothes, food and medicines and as their name came up they stood. This in a small rebel village you can only reach two months a year! My sermon was Deuteronomy 30:4-14 as that his become Marbens favorite! We closed by giving out candy packs and sacks of rice and clothing.

The trip back by Jeepney to Santa Maria took 7 hours. Monday was appreciated day of rest as Marben was quite sick most of the night. I wore him out! He had to go by bus to Manila Sunday night to meet with immigration interviewer Monday AM and then arrange things for our trip to Manila in a week so when he got back to Santa Maria Tuesday morning he was exhausted. We will have a program tonight (Tuesday) and then tomorrow Michelle is doing a medical distribution tomorrow morning and we visit LeUnion tomorrow afternoon.

Change of plans suddenly. We went to Candon City for lunch (38 kilometers or 21 miles) at Jollibee, a competitor to McDonalds which is across the street. I had spaghetti which comes with hot dog chopped in tomato sauce. It is tasty! On the way back we got cell phone call advising the Barangay Captain (Mayor) where our meeting is scheduled was shot and killed this morning. We were stopped at the entrance and informed by PNP (Philippines National Police) the Barangay was under civil authority for investigation. So the meeting was cancelled and we had a pastors meeting at the church instead. Such political assassinations are sadly common here. They average nearly one a month in The Philippines!

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