Missionaries are the foundation of foreign missions, but time and cost will never allow them to fulfill the Great Commission. The evangelization of the world will happen when we disciple and train nationals in their own country and culture to reach their own people with the gospel.
During “May Madness” here in the Philippines, we met ourselves coming and going. Our schedule was super hectic with final exam week, recital time, presentations, church dedications, organizations, baccalaureate, awards day and graduation! Whew! With all of this on our schedule, Doug and I tried to visit as many churches as we could each weekend.
We have been partnering with Pastor Morito Peroy and his wife Lourdes, for four years in a church plant project in Valderrama on the island of Panay. They were ready to organize into a church a year ago, but we were in the US and couldn’t get back to the Philippines because of COVID travel restrictions. They waited until we returned.
When we arrived here in August, travel between islands was still restricted, and we could not visit there until April. After two hours on a boat, three hours on a bus and six hours by car, we finally arrived! As we reached the barangay, the men were cooking, children were getting their showers out by the pump and everyone was scurrying around like little ants, preparing for the big day. Our hearts were blessed to be a small part of this mission point of becoming a church. The people there have a mind to work and a servant’s heart. To God be the glory!
We have one graduate this year with a Bachelor in Church Music — Jeffery Dave Jaronay. We are proud of his accomplishments, as well as the other music students, and their performances in our recital.
The 42nd Graduation was held at the Baptist Missionary Association Bible College, the first one in three years because of COVID restrictions. We combined the 2020 and 2021 graduates with our 2022 graduates to give us a total of 20 students graduating with a BA in Theology, Religious Education or Church Music.
Diane and I returned to the US on May 22 for two months this summer. We are overdue for our annual 50,000-mile check-up, which feels more like 100,000 miles! While we are here, we will be visiting as many churches as we can in that short time. If you would like us to visit your church and share what God is doing in the Philippines, contact us at (601) 427-0128, (601) 916-5542 or email at email@example.com. You can also contact us on private messenger at Elwin Doug Diane Lee.