Sunday, September 27, 2009

Typhoon Ondoy

On Saturday, Typhoon Ondoy (international name Ketsana) swept through the Philippines. Although this has not been our first experience with a typhoon, this was by far the closest typhoon and most severe. We lost power for a couple of hours, our Internet for almost 24 hours, and our water pressure diminished to barely over a trickle. There were winds of 50-60 mph and constant rain. The news outlets said a months worth of rain was dumped in just 12 hours. The reports at the time of this post say that there are 52 dead and over 300,000 displaced. The area where we are at, the province of Bulacan/Pampanga, has been placed under a "state of calamity." Thankfully, our home and the church did not receive much damage. There were some leaks in the roof but no flooding. However, there were many of our church members whose homes suffered flooding. The damage ranges from ankle to waist deep in water. Please be sure to keep them in your prayers. In spite of this, many of them still managed to make it to church on Sunday. With a smile on our faces, the first song we sang Sunday morning was "A Shelter in the Time of Storm." As Christians, we know that our joy does not depend on our circumstances. We have Jesus as our rock in a weary land.

-Ptr. Matt & Rina-

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Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Prayer Request - Town Fiesta

This Thursday is the fiesta of Bahay Pare. There will be a lot of people celebrating. It is basically a tribute to the patron saint of Bahay Pare - Virgen de la Merced (seen in the above pictures). In the weeks leading up to the fiesta day, there have been processionals and extra mass being held. We had an interesting experience a couple of Sunday nights ago. While I was in the middle of our communion service, we could hear Ave Maria coming from down the street in the tent where the idol was, but when the service was over and we were heading home we saw people dancing as they were now playing Achy Breaky Heart.

Please pray that there will be many opportunities to share our faith and pass out tracts during the town fiesta of Bahay Pare.

-Ptr. Matt & Rina-
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Sunday, September 20, 2009

Our Grandparents Day Celebration

Last Sunday we celebrated Grandparents Day at our church. We had about 15 grandparents in attendance for our morning service. Some of the younger children preformed special songs for their Lolo and Lola and we gave away tea and coffee mugs to all of the grandparents. Also, we gave out prizes to the oldest grandparent (89 years old and she accepted Christ as her Saviour for the first time that day), the grandparent with the youngest grandchild, and the grandparent with the most grandchildren in attendance.

-Ptr. Matt & Rina-
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Sunday, September 13, 2009

Prayer Request

We would appreciate it if everyone could remember Dulce in your prayers as she will be heading back to the United States on Monday. Her flight is scheduled to leave from Manila --> Tokyo --> Atlanta --> Chicago. Please pray for her traveling safety and also that God will continue to watch over and protect Rina and I as she is gone.

-Ptr. Matt & Rina-
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Thursday, September 3, 2009

Ptr. Resty Rivera's 10th church anniversary

This past Sunday night, I was given the honor of being the guest speaker at the 10th anniversary celebration of Ptr. Resty Rivera's church, God's Covenant Fundamental Baptist Church. His church is located in a resettlement area for those effected by the Mt. Pinatubo eruption in 1991. The theme for the anniversary celebration was, "Our labour is not in vain in the Lord." I spoke out of I Corinthians 15:58 in reference to their theme. There were many people who attended the service, including several first time visitors who got saved. Over 30 of our church members came to show their support and fellowship with Ptr. Resty's church. There was special singing and testimonies, and afterward food was served to all who attended.

-Ptr. Matt & Rina-
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