Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Philippines Trip

I (Philip) returned from my marathon trip to the Philippines on Sunday. 24 hours of flying and airports going and coming, plus 12 hours of car, bus, taxi, and tricycle (motorcycle with attached cart) rides to get from Manila to Alibago where I was to lecture for 6-8 hours for two days.

The first picture of the new Bible Methodist Conference center in Alibago. The picture is shot from about midway up the property looking down toward the 3-story conference center and the main gate. Bro. David Yucadi was the architect and foreman for the project. I was impressed with the excellence and practicality of his

The second picture is of me and my primary interpreter, Bro. Lauro Forto. He does a great job and occasionally does a little preaching of his own as he interprets! :-) I taught through the material I wrote on Loving God: The Primary Principle of the Christian Life.

The third picture is a shot of the pastors and pastor's wives attending the seminar. They were jammed in the room, sitting on the balcony outside the classroom, and lined up in the hallway next to the classroom. They were very attentive and evidenced good understanding by their questions.

The fourth picture is a group shot of the pastors and pastors' wives from one of the four Bible Methodist conferences in the Philippines. They were all thrilled to receive copies of the book, thanks to the generosity of Dr. Avery. (I don't receive any royalties from the book because GBSC paid me to write it.)

The fifth picture is a shot of the tabernacle now under construction at the top of the property. Bro. Yucadi estimates that it will seat around 700 in the area currently covered with the gravel used to mix cement. They do have an electric cement mixer, but the sand and gravel as well as the mixed cement are all moved by hand! Lots of work!

David and Christina Black did a marvelous job of hosting me. I appreciated David helping me navigate the cultural differences. Our conversations were edifying and encouraging.

The capstone of the trip was a providentially arranged meeting with a PhD buddy of mine and his wife who was a Greek student of mine at Bob Jones University. Dr. Tim Berrey, his wife Laura, and their three children: Suzanna, Timothy, and James just "happened" (cf. Ruth 2:3 NASB) to be traveling through Villasis on the morning of the day I was leaving. My email informing them that I was in the Philippines and in a town on their next day's route was a bit of a surprise to them! :-) Tim teaches at the Bob Jones Memorial Bible College and Seminary near Manila.

I encountered some fascinating fruit on the way back from Alibago to Villasis (where the Bible Methodist College is. The hanging clusters of fruit in the foreground appear to be in a net, but that is just the pattern of the scaley exterior of the fruit. I don't know the names of any of them, but all I tasted were good.

I thank the Lord for His traveling mercies and for His strength as I shared what it means to love God whole-heartedly.

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