Showing posts with label MET. Show all posts
Showing posts with label MET. Show all posts

Lessons from MET 2023


On July 5-11, 2023, the UPDCF once again conducted the Missions Exposure Trip, the first one after the pandemic. A group of 21 UP Diliman students, DCF alumni and Diliman Campus Bible Church members joined the week-long evangelistic and discipleship follow up activity in Baguio City, La Trinidad and Bokod, Benguet. I want to share some of the highlights of my experience from MET 2023:

1.We were able to share the Gospel message to a 90-year-old lola at Burnham park who was very responsive to the Good News. She was part of a group of elderly who frequented the park to ask for food or help. Though her condition was difficult, I realized God’s grace for giving her long life so that she can learn of Jesus’ love and respond in faith, all by grace. As we helped alleviate her physical needs, I was joyful that we could give her the best gift there is—the Gospel of Jesus.

The family of Kuya Julius, a UPDCF alumnus, joined the team. I was so blessed seeing them serve the Lord together, including their five-year-old son, Jes. I was especially moved by Jes’ excitement to share the Gospel with other children using the Evangecube. He even hiked 60-degree slopes to reach the church in Bokod, Benguet. Indeed, no one’s too young or too old to take part in God’s Great Commission.

3.  It is usually more challenging to share the Gospel in urban and commercial settings. We experienced this first-hand at San Vicente. Owners of shops and stores were busy going about their business. Many refused to listen, but God still led us to people who were open and eager to hear the Gospel. We are indeed just links in the chain of people’s spiritual journeys. Sometimes we are called to till dry and hard ground, to plant seeds, water saplings, cultivate plants or reap the harvest. We rejoice whatever role God gives us in His mission!

4. During our day-long evangelism activities, me and Alvia often struggled with hoarseness of voice and sore throat after talking to several people, non-stop. We thought of being consistent in sharing the Gospel even to just one person each day so that we will not have that problem. We can pour out our hearts and share passionately to that person as we continue to take part in God’s work even after the MET. Indeed, the Missions Exposure Trip has ended but the Great Commission continues until the Lord Jesus returns.

5. A few years ago, we made a tract to share the Gospel in UP. It is entitled, “The Bridge to God.” When we went to Quezon Province for MET, we wrote the Filipino version so that it can be easily understood by the people. I am joyful that we completed the Ilocano version in time for our MET to Benguet. Before this trip, I shared the Gospel in my mother tongue only less than five times because I am not as fluent as I used to. But with the Ilocano translation of our Gospel tract, I was able to share many times in Ilocano, especially to older people in Bokod and Baguio. Using my mother tongue helped the people better understand the Gospel. It was a joy to proclaim Christ in my heart language!

6. During our closing fellowship, we were asked to write down an encouragement for our fellow MET members. God again reminded me to pray for a missional heart, love for the brethren and compassion for those who don’t know Jesus yet. I remembered the words of Marie Louise de Meester, “Let your heart be like Christ’s so generous and so great, that the whole world may find room in it.” Jesus is the perfect example of passion and compassion for people. When he saw crowds, he was moved because they were like sheep without a shepherd. And so, he told His disciples to ask God to send workers in the harvest field. I am praying that the Lord will enable us to respond to this prayer.

7. I also experienced several spiritual struggles during the MET that could have distracted, discouraged, or frightened me. But I praise the Holy Spirit for His abiding peace and presence amid all these. At one time, the phone we use for our online financial transactions got lost! Though it stressed me at first, we surrendered it to God. He protected the phone, and we were able to retrieve it from our jeepney driver. At another time, we also experienced spiritual opposition while sharing in two households. At the corner of my eye, I noticed someone or something peeking from the window. But when I glanced at it, there was no one there! This happened twice. But instead of being afraid, I just prayed for God’s protection. I remembered Kuya Caloy’s reminder that when there is spiritual opposition, it means the enemy is not happy with what we are doing. In this case, the enemy surely hated the gift of salvation being spread in Bokod.

8. I was also blessed by the opportunity to minister to several members of the MET team. When I was busy completing my MDiv, I couldn’t spend much time in talking to and encouraging members of the fellowship. But during the MET, I had several opportunities to pray for and talk to the students. I was blessed to be given the chance to catch up with them and to pray for their struggles during the MET and even in other areas of life. The Missions Trip is truly a ministry not just to the community but also to the team members. God also speaks and transforms them as much as He transforms those whom they serve.

9. Lastly, I am also blessed by God’s Word during our Sunday service in Bokod. Before the MET, I asked God to use the outreach to help me better sense His leading for the next season of my life. During the service, I was pleasantly surprised when the text used by Pastor Marlon was the same text God used to call me in campus ministry—Philippians 4. Though Pastor Marlon focused only on the first half, I was blessed to be reminded again of the two truths that God used to lead me to full-time campus work. I should not be anxious about anything but surrender everything in prayer. Though the next season of my ministry life remains uncertain, this reminder is still true, especially when I am paralyzed by the struggles of campus and church work. And when this happens, it is also crucial that I fill my mind with what is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent and praiseworthy. I thank God for these reminders, even as they help me better hear His leading in the ministry. 

In all these, I share our team’s refrain, “That’s God’s faithfulness. Praise the Lord!”

Why 1 Thessalonians 2:8? (MET)

1 Thessalonians 2:8 was this year's theme verse for the Missions Exposure Trip (MET) in Sorsogon. In 32 words, the Apostle Paul expressed his kind of evangelism-- one fueled by love that builds genuine relationships.

He wrote, "We loved you so much that we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well, because you had become so dear to us."

DCF's leaders chose this verse for several reasons. Topping the list was their desire to reemphasize relationship-building in evangelism.

This was their heart because of the modern fast-food mentality of Christians that substituted genuine friendships with impersonal and canned evangelism formulas. Such mentality is fueled by an unhealthy interest in numbers and by misguided empire-building principles.

The student leaders wanted Paul's brand of evangelism not only among the MET participants but also the members of the Dormitories Christian Fellowship in UP and the Living Word Christian Fellowship in Quezon. Their strategy was to give hands-on training to the MET members who will then spark evangelism movements in their respective campuses by Gods's grace.

Prayerfully, the movements that will arise will balance faithful and Biblical preaching of the Gospel with genuine love and relationship. As the students share Jesus with their lips, they will also exhibit Him in their life while genuinely loving people as people, not simply conversion prospects.

It is true that one week is not enough to build lasting friendships with people, especially if you start out as total strangers. This is where the partner church comes in. The MET team always works with a local church in its target area. While the members go out and sow seeds, the church follows up on those who respond positively or show interest in the Gospel.

In Sorsogon, several people who heard about Jesus willingly gave their address and contact number to the MET Team. The students who joined the True Love Waits Seminar did the same when they filled up the attendance sheet. These were all turned over to Pastor July of the Sorsogon Bible Christian Church.

Technology also posed blessings for this MET Team. Some members who developed friendships with the locals have the privilege of following up people through Facebook and mobile phones. Even if they could not be there physically, these new found friends are one text or PM away.

One other feature of the verse that particularly appealed to the students was the driving force of evangelism focused on love. It is interesting that Paul started with the statement, "We loved you so much," underlining the truth that the love they felt for the people of Thessalonica compelled them to share Jesus.

This kind of love is of God and not man. Afterall, how can you love someone you have just met? And this love was shown by introducing Jesus and His transforming power to the lives of the people they met. This is done not through mere words but by their very lives.

Perhaps the image is most clearly seen in the lives of missionaries. Many Christian missionaries turned away from a potentially lucrative work or comfortable life to spend time with people to journey with them towards Christ. Why do they do this? Out of their love and concern for people, and their desire to honor God.

In one short week, the students of the MET team experienced this kind of life, though theirs was shorter and potentially more comfortable than the daily struggles of full-time Christian workers. However, they still had a taste of sharing Jesus and investing a part of their lives in several people's faith journey towards Christ.

They may never know all who responded to Jesus' call of repentance and faith, but their joy is the unchanging affirmation that "your labor in the Lord is not in vain (1 Corinthians 15:58)."

Rummage Sale for the Missions Trip

It took a while for me to blog again because I was busy with other things. I'm starting off with this post about last Saturday's rummage sale for the month of October.

First of all, our heart-felt thanks goes to all who gave items for the sale. We had a good supply of blouses and rubber shoes as well as long-sleeved polo from various alumni. During our sale, however, several tricycle drivers were asking for maong pants and men's T-shirts. We are still welcoming donations for our second round of sale.

Second, we want to thank everyone who gave their precious time to man the store last weekend. We are also encouraged by those who helped in the pricing and the transport of the items from our house to Ate Flor's at 41 Malinis. We also thank Ate Flor who generously opened her home for us and Dang, as well, for cooking great food for the volunteers.

Finally, we want to express our gratitude to everyone who spent a minute or two in prayer for the entire rummage sale. We acknowledge that your spiritual support made a lot of difference for us, volunteers. Though the day was wet, cold and exhausting, nothing energized us more than the thought of brothers and sisters lifting us all in prayer to the Lord.

Jim and Diana are busy cleaning the slippers and shoes for rummage. I am blessed by Jim's presence. He did not plan to help in the pricing but he joined us in the last minute from the pricing until our rummage shop's closing.

Marvee and Kuya Arnold joined Diana in pricing the dresses and shirts. We consulted Kuya Arn for the prices because he is a self-confessed ukay-ukay expert.

We sold mostly shirts, skirts and dresses  for women. Here is a snap shot of our merchandise carefully folded by Diana and Marvee.

The Yakal and Ipil boys joined us the following day. They helped in carrying the merchandise from our house to Ate Flor's. It's amusing to realize that most of those present were boys but the items we were selling were for ladies. Here, we see Marko, Diana and Jayvee deciding on the price of a coat donated by Ate Flor.

Jim looks tired and grumpy here but he actually enjoyed the sale. 

Finally, here's a photo of our shop. It's a bit messy because we had to cram the items in one corner of Ate Flor's garage to shade them from the drizzle. We usually spread the items all over the place but this time, we were constrained by the rain. 

Here's another view of our rummage sale. The cloudy sky doesn't show in the photo but the entire Saturday was actually rainy. It's still amazing though because we were able to sell some items and raise P1,300 for the day. It isn't much but it's God's provision so we praise Him. Ate Shii and Kuya Butch also donated additional rummage items in the afternoon so we have new ones to sell next Wednesday. :)

Fund raising for the Missions Exposure Trip is truly a testing of faith. But I have peace because throughout the years, God has never failed in providing for our needs. I am actually excited to see Him work wonders and miracles one more time as we put together Php 82,000 for the Missions Exposure Trip.

Just an update, we have now raised around Php 23,000 and counting. Praise God! :D

Designing our Missions Shirt

Now here is an improved version from my friend, Jet. :) It's a lot nicer than mine. Let's watch the evolution of this shirt design.

Here is my first attempt at our missions exposure trip shirt design. It's still a rough draft but I'm posting it for everyone to get an idea of what I'm thinking. It's more of a statement shirt, actually, that says: "Preaching hard truths even on hard times."

I'll work on the readability, though. :)

Praying for the Missions Exposure Trip

After travelling for eight straight hours from La Union, I arrived at UP to catch the last part of DCF's Missions Prayer Meeting. I was just in time to take photos of the praying people.

In lieu of the normal gathering for the dorms, DCF allotted the whole months of September and October to specifically pray for the Missions Trip. Weekly gatherings were set to update members of the preparations, plans, activities and other details of the event. All these are lifted up in prayer to the Lord.

Here are photos of the prayer meeting this evening:

Jayvee and Del are in fervent prayer when I took this photo.

Here are Yen, Kit and Marvee in their prayer triad. 

Ate Rashel joined us despite her very busy schedule in law school.

After the prayer meeting, we headed to one of our favorite food stalls in UP-- Kusina ni Mamang. They are famous for their home-made pork, beef, chicken and shrimp Siomai. I usually order one assorted Siomai meal. This is made up of six pieces of siomai and one cup of rice. I find the meal very affordable at Php 35.00 and satisfying as well.

Here is a photo of us eating:

I enjoin you all to pray with us for the 2011 Missions Exposure Trip

Praise God for:
1. the planning with Pastor Nilo and Ate Lily in Catanauan
       a. safe trip going there with Kuya Caloy, Kuya Mayn, Kryss Ann and Marvi
       b. activities in the Missions Trip
       c. place to stay during the trip
2. Planning with Kuya Caloy, Kuya Pau, Dianne and Marvi (budget: Php 82,400.00)
3. Kuya Pao Gonzales agreed to use his vehicle for transportation from UP to the bus terminal

Pray for:
1. burden and right motives for the team members (15 from DCF; 15 from LWCF-Lucban)
2. preparations
      a. interview of team members
      b. permission for the campus evangelism
      c. TLW materials
3. People in Catanauan
      a. Partner church (Christian Parish Church), as they invite people for the evan training and TLW
      b. people in the community that they will be open to the Gospel
4. Fund-raising activities
      a. rummage sale on Oct. 1-2
      b. alumni support
5. shirt design, printing, production and sales

Thank you so much for praying with us! May the Good Lord be glorified in this Missions Trip! 

For those who want to join, we hold the Missions Prayer Meeting every Monday, 6-8 p.m. at the Church of the Risen Lord.

Planning for the Missions Exposure Trip 2011

From Right to Left: Marvee (Missions and Prayer Head), Diana (DCF Chairperson), Kuya Caloy, Pau (DCF Staff Worker)

Every year, DCF's Missions Exposure Trip is a challenge and a blessing. It is a challenge because so many things need to be done in so little time. But it is a blessing as well because the trip is an opportunity to be used by God for His glory.

Yesterday, I joined Marvee, Diana and Kuya Caloy in the preliminary planning for the 2011 Missions Trip. DCF continues its outreach to Southern Luzon this year, ministering to Catanauan, Quezon and its neighboring towns for a week on October 21 to 27.

Catanauan is a "first class municipality"  in the Province of Quezon, six hours away from Metro Manila. It is a town of almost 70,000 people steeped in the Roman Catholic religion. Founded in 1713, the town was originally called  Nabatasan.

In the late 18th through 19th centuries, however, frequent raids by "moros" ravaged the town. This "prompted the people to construct two small stone forts or watch towers (magkatanawan) mounted with artillery" for protection. Thus, the name Catanauan.

DCF will again partner with the Living Word Christian Fellowship from Lucban, Quezon in ministering to the people of Catanauan. A team of 30 people will be formed to help the local churches in the area. Three days will be dedicated to evangelistic activities like house-to-house Gospel sharing, tract giving and campus evangelism in the Southern Luzon State University-Catanauan.

The team will also offer evangelism training to the youth to inspire them to actively participate in winning souls for Christ. At the same time, the True Love Waits Seminar will be offered to counter "erotic relationships" of teens in the area.

This year's Mission's Theme Verse is Colossians 4:3, "And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains."

There are still so much to be done. We ask that you consider partnering with us through prayer above all. Ask the Lord to prepare the hearts of the people of Catanauan, that they may be open and receptive to the Gospel. Pray also for the team that God will prepare their hearts in the rigorous spiritual work ahead. May they have pure motives in joining and depend only on the Holy Spirit throughout the trip.

Pray also that God will provide for the needed funding for the whole Missions Exposure Trip. Initial costings peg the budget at Php 81,000 for the week-long Missions Trip of 30 students. God has been faithful throughout the years and I have no doubt in His rich provision for this year. May all glory, honor and praise be unto Him alone!

2011 Missions Budget


*The team is composed of 30 students (14 from DCF, 13 from LWCF-Lucban, and 3 from LWCF-Infanta) together with Pastor Caloy Novisteros (DCF) and Pastor Paul Pennaroyo (LWCF-Lucban). The missions trip will be held for 7 days, from October 21 to October 27, 2011. 

ð       Transportation
DCF team members:
500/person  x  16 people  x  2                                       =      16, 000.00
LWCF team members: 
250/person  x  16 people  x  2                                       =        8, 000.00
ð       Food
45/person/meal  x  32 people  x  22 meals                                   =        31,680.00
drinking water
                        35/container  x  20 containers                                     =            700.00
TLW lunch
30/person  x  80 people                                                   =         2, 400.00
TLW snacks
                        10/person  x  80 people                                             =             800.00

ð       TLW materials and Evangelistic Tracts
60-80 participants & 30 leaders                                                   =       5,520.00

ð       Board and lodging
200/person  x  32 people                                                             =        6, 400.00

ð       Rest and Recreation (Tuhian or Mulanay Beach)
Transporation, Food, Others (for 50 people**)                            =         4, 000.00
**50 people includes the 32 team members and
                some people from the partner church

ð       Other Expenses
Transportation to other barangays
                        200/person  x  32 people                                          =          6, 400.00
medicines/first aid                                                                        =             500.00
TOTAL: PHP 82,400.00

Note: Finances left from the Missions Trip will go to the expenses for DCF Camp on November 4 -5, 2011.

How you can help:
Board and Lodging, Food, Meds, RnR: 193.50/person/day for 7 days- 32 people
Transportation (Bus, and inter-barangay): 475/person one way- 32 people
                                                                               : 950/person full-32 people
Ministry expenses (True Love Waits Seminar, evan, tracts, Christian Literature): 109/participant- 80 participants

·         Option A: Board and Lodging, Food, Meds, RnR
·         Option B: Transportation
·         Option C: Ministry Expenses
·         Option D: Mixed Package
·         Option E: Any Amount

Shirt Designs to Choose from

Dear friends! Here are the three entries for the DCF Missions Shirt. I think another one's going to be added later. Please view the following and give your suggestions:

Option 1 
Option 2 

Option 3

Missions Exposure Trip to Marinduque Part 1

The people of Marinduque like to think of their island as the "heart" of the Philippine archipelago because of its shape and location. Found in Southern Luzon, between the provinces of Mindoro and Quezon, the island-province boasts of pristine beaches, waterfalls, caves and other natural wonders that can truly make the heart skip a beat.

It is a place I can easily love. But I went to Marinduque not as a tourist but as a missionary. Together with a team of almost 30 individuals, I spent a week in the island helping in seminars and small group discussions on Sunday School, evangelism, holiness and purity, sexuality and relationships. We also shared the Gospel to a number of people in a community, and I acted as a counselor for my teammates during that long week.

Editing what I posted on my Facebook the day I arrived home after the trip, I will summarize the Missions Exposure Trip of 2010 as "tiring but satisfying."