Elephant Churches & Rabbit Churches!
Some history! In 1985 when I first moved to Negros, there were 14 churches on the island. Most years since then, two or three new churches have been started yearly by various preachers and evangelists. Some of these churches are in the cities, some in the mountains, some have buildings, and some meet in homes. We are thankful for the many faithful workers who are not supported by VFM but are strongly committed to starting churches. There are now close to 100 churches on Negros Island that have been started by yearly additions. The growth has been steady but slow, however the population on Negros has doubled during that time. Can we do better? We pray that the existing churches will continue to be healthy and grow. It is only as churches train more disciples that we will then have new daughter churches. Leadership Training is vital to have before any church planting will happen. Often in the past the focus was on new Christians and not on making new disciples. As we focus on making disciples, new churches will result, and there will be new Christians. We need to be more aggressive in starting new churches! It begins with prayer and then training others. We can’t do it by ourselves, but we have the promise and help of God’s Spirit.
The Future! The good news is that some churches are starting to grow not by addition, but by multiplication (like rabbits). Several leaders are praying, training and hoping to start churches more rapidly. The Bunga Tayasan Church in Negros Oriental area has five outreach house churches, and the Kabankalan Church of Christ has recently started four new house outreach churches. Several other churches are having a greater vision for rapid church multiplication and are starting churches. An elephant church says “come” to worship with us, but a rabbit church is focused on the idea of “go.” An established church has a set time of worship each week, but a “Simbalay” house church can meet at any time. They will go to any place, at any time, to share with anyone the gospel! Pray for more workers to be trained! May God renew in us an urgency to start more churches!
“May we double the number of churches on Negros Island by 2020”
When one has perfect eye sight, it is called 20/20 Vision. May God give us His Vision, His great Compassion for the lost, and His Desire for the kingdom of God to grow.
May by the year 2020 we encourage every church on Negros to have a baby church!
May we go from having 100 churches on Negros to having 200 churches by the year 2020.
Pray that God can use VFM to encourage churches to continue to be healthy – by training more leaders – which will result in the starting of many new churches by 2020! Equip to Evangelize!
Meet Nino Abobot, pastor of Uptown Christian Church in Don Salvador! He is currently building a place to raise quail and chickens. The above picture shows our recent delivery of “nipa” (which is a grass used for roofing), for the livelihood building being constructed. We need to purchase 200 layer chicken and 1,000 quail to disperse here and at another future location.
This would be a great opportunity for a youth, children’s worship, or adult Sunday School project. If anyone is interested in helping on these projects, please email me directly: firstname.lastname@example.org.
A layer hen is approximately $10.
A laying quail is approximately 90 cents.
We rejoice that VFM was able to help with a welder for a livelihood project this past month.
We were able to donate 4 goats this month to pastors to help start their own livelihood programs
Mary Wilson had to make an emergency trip to the USA for her Uncle Harold’s illness and funeral in Holton, Kansas. She will be returning to the Philippines on March 13th. I miss her! She will return just in time for our VSL graduation and the start of our summer activities. Please keep her travel in your prayers. Mary has been sick for the last two weeks with a bad cold. She has had two visits to the doctor. Pray she will be well before travelling back next Monday.
Pray also for VFM’s finances. We are trying to purchase land here in Bacolod. This land will be used for leadership training, camp, sports, our VSL Bible college, and hopefully a new church! We are working on a contract now.
Pray for our workers and church leaders, for new churches, and the growth of leadership training.
Pray for us to have God’s wisdom on how to encourage and help churches and leaders!
Praise for the several new churches being started recently!
We rejoice that VFM is helping with church construction at two locations currently!