Sunday, April 21, 2024
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Pastor Pete in Asia-Pacific

Pastor Pete (Pedro) Etabag began serving at Lifeword in the 1970s when it was called Harvest Gleaner Hour. Throughout his 47 years of broadcasting, he has always used the most advanced technology available to reach the nations with the gospel. With the same vision as Lifeword, he sees a world without borders as cloud technology has taken the ministry to new heights.

He loves training new media disciples, and not just in the Philippines, where he teaches and trains students at the BMA Bible College. He is also a resource for Lifeword’s global partners in the Asia-Pacific region, all of whom have technology and government hindrances. In the past year, he has dealt with harsh pandemic lockdowns and his own lengthy bout with COVID, but has not slowed down. He is always in teaching mode and available to Lifeword’s global partners.

Pastor Pete says, “The challenge in some Asian countries is that they have slow internet, and some have government restrictions.” In Cambodia, slow internet is the primary issue. Dany Seng, a self-taught English speaker, produces Khmer-language content that includes a daily program aired on government-owned radio. Years ago, she had to be very careful about biblical content, but laws now allow her to broadcast more freely.

In Laos, the country is very open about its dislike of Christians, so those who produce Lao content there must be careful. There has only been one Baptist church in Laos, and it was through BMA efforts. 

Many Filipinos live in Thailand. Two years ago, Pastor Pete began asking Filipino pastors there to produce videos for the Lifeword Cloud. He will continue to push them, he says, because it is such a desperate mission field.

Currently, Pastor Pete has a burden for heavily populated Muslim areas like Mindanao (an island in the Philippines), where people need hope. He was recently contacted by newly ordained Filipino pastors Jehosua de los Santos and Nhorgan Francisco about installing a 150-watt FM transmitter and other media equipment in Mindanao. It will reach three tribal villages and add three additional languages — Tiboli, Bla-an and Bagobo. Each tribe has pastors who preach and teach the Bible in their own languages. Fortunately, he says, the Philippine government does not limit radio, especially in outlying areas. They are much more interested in what’s going on in the big cities.

Since video is the king of content everywhere in the world, especially with young people, Pastor Pete loves to train eager students through media discipleship, so they are provided with the equipment. He says they especially need to learn scriptwriting so they can produce good quality (and short) media content that people want to hear.

He dreams of a training center for media technology, where broadcasters around the world can come for training and to share ideas. In the meantime, he is reachable any time for Lifeword’s global partners’ questions and concerns.

Pastor Pete says, “Beginning with analog in 1985, I had to learn about and usually teach myself the latest technology. I never knew God would lead me down this path. I’m always researching and learning so I can continue to have media disciples. Time is short. The Lord is coming soon.”

Team Lifeword Info

Lifeword Sunday 2022 is Oct. 23! If your church would like to schedule Donny or another team member to share what God is doing through Lifeword’s ministry, contact Jennifer at jennifer@lifeword.org.

Please pray for one of our Romania team members to help develop a kids camp for Ukrainian refugees. Also pray as our Lifeword global partners work together toward one important goal — that every tribe, every tongue and every nation would know the name of Jesus!

Join us in praising God for the way He is blessing the Gaitans’ media ministry in Nicaragua as they develop teacher training videos for children’s ministry and create married couples’ studies to be used locally and in Cuba.

Holly Meriweather
Holly Meriweather
Holly Meriweather is the lead writer for the Baptist Missionary Association of America. No part of this article may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from Lifeword.org or BMAMissions.org.
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