November 1, 1997 Issue
by Virgilio O. Danao Sr.

Sometime in 1988, my wife and I made our first visit to the U.S.A. During that memorable visit, we had the privilege to be acquainted personally with stalwarts of the faith and faithful members of the Church. Stalwarts of the faith and faithful members of the Church, who had, and still have, deep foresights for mission work. For they were the very first ones who immediately extended their hands right at the start of the Lord’s work in my country. And I am glad and grateful for most of them still are behind the work, by continually extending their love, concern, generosity and financial assistance toward the Lord’s work there. Of course, we, the entire brotherhood in my country, especially the preaching brethren, acknowledge the fact that without their continued generosity and support, the mission work there would have not been able to reach the stage where it presently stands. A stage, which I would say, unique in itself; in the sense that the mission work there is one, (if not the only one) among all mission fields the brotherhood has in the world, which has an American missionary who is only in the Philippines not more than 21 days every year. And I am glad to inform you that the work there continues to move on toward progress, and paces steadily towards spiritual maturity.

However, the Lord’s work there does not always walk along "a bed of roses", so to speak. Just like the early church, and any mission work in the world today, the work in my country is not spared in encountering problems whose main objective is to undermine the growth of the Church, if not to totally destroy it, inflicted by those who continue to oppose us, and sometimes those from "within the brotherhood." But through the guidance of the Scriptures, we are able to pilot the work to go through these big waves caused by the strong winds of trials, spiritually; determined evermore to move on toward spiritual maturity.

Beginning from a single tiny congregation located in my home town of Roxas, Isabela, Philippines in 1981, after about 17 years ago, the Lord’s work expanded to neighboring provinces. And today, we find local congregations in the provinces of Isabela where the work was started, Quirino, Cagayan, Ilocos Norte, even going farther north of Northern Luzon in the group of small islands in Camiguin; in the provinces of Pangasinan and Tarlac. We also started our work in two major cities of the Philippines, namely Baguio City and Metro-Manila, and two smaller cities — Santiago City and Laoag City. Recently, we were able to start work in Cavite province, south of Metro-Manila. Now, the brotherhood there has a vision —a long-range program: This is about our desire to extend our work to Mindanao, the second largest island in the south among the islands that comprised the Philippines archipelago. Though the program seems hard to attain, we earnestly pray this will come to realization. This can be attained through your continued financial support and prayers.

In behalf of the brotherhood in the Philippines, I continue to solicit your assistance. Of course, our brotherhood there is trying hard to share to the work whatever it can give. Still, it can not meet all the necessary financial needs of the work. The economic condition of the Philippines is not stable. Prices of prime commodities have skyrocketed. The common people are affected, economically, and this severely affects the income of the brethren and the treasury of the Church. Permit me then once again to say, please do not forget the work in your prayers. I know the great brotherhood here in this nation of plenty and satisfaction, is helping financially many mission works throughout the world. Our plea, however, is: Please don’t forget the work in the Philippines. Please continue to share your love and generosity. We can assure you brethren, we will see to it that your support will be put to good use.

We must remember, that the Mission work in the Philippines is not the work of the Filipino brethren alone; nor it is the work of the American brethren. NO! It is the work of God. As members of his family, we are only His instruments in the execution of His plan for the salvation of the world; and so that this may come to realization!

To those faithful Churches and individual members of the Church, who have been supporting all of us, in behalf of the entire brotherhood in my country, thank you very much! May I also acknowledge the efforts extended by some of our capable preaching brethren from the U.S., to the work there. To name a few, whom I can right now remember, Bro. Duane Permenter and Bro. Brian Burns, young preachers as they are, but dedicated to mission work, Bro. James Franklin, Bro. Paul Nichols, Bro. Jerry Cutter, Bro. Bennie Cryer, and Bro. Don L. King. But foremost among them, are Bro. Cutter, Bro. Cryer and Bro. King who helped us lay the very firm rudiment of our Mission Work in the Philippines, with a very special mention of the continued sacrifices, dedication and love Bro. King has shared with the work there, every since its start in 1981. Their dedication and sacrifices which have instilled in my mind have motivated me to love the Lord's work, more than anything else, even more than my family itself and myself. I salute them, and I pray their tribes may continue to abound evermore in the brotherhood.

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