On November 8, 2013, super typhoon Haiyan, locally called “Yolanda” made landfall in the Philippines. This typhoon was a category 5 storm when it hit the islands of Samar and Leyte. Typhoons are no stranger to the Philippines, but they are unwelcome guests; especially one that is considered to be the strongest storm of its kind to make landfall in recorded history.
We praise the Lord that our location, Dumaguete City, on the island of Negros, was spared the devastation cause by this typhoon. We also praise the Lord that all of the FBMI missionaries serving in the Philippines have been found to be alive, even those who were in the areas hardest hit. Other missionaries were deemed missing for some time, but to our knowledge all have been found.
The official government number is that the death toll from this storm has reached 4,011. The actual number is believed, by many, to be much, much higher. The media, here, displays more graphic images that we are used to seeing on American television broadcasts, and many of the photos contain dead bodies in the streets that for days laid there as people passed by.
Thousands are still reported as missing and thousands are recovering from injuries sustained because of the typhoon. Many churches lost buildings, and many pastors lost their homes, but more heartbreaking is the members that some churches have lost. It will be a long time before some places ever recover and we ask that you would continue to pray for the Filipino people. The Filipino people are strong; they have much resolve, and they already are speaking of solidarity as they try to rise back up. Please pray that they will ﬁnd their hope in Christ Jesus alone and that they will learn of the strength that only God can provide.
International Baptist Church at Dumaguete took an offering to help with the relief efforts being conducted by FBMI missionaries Ricky Martin Jr. (Iloilo City) and Nathan Goodpaster (Silay City). Both of these men were closer to those affected by the storm and were able to organize relief efforts. The relief is ongoing and if you would like to help, please send checks to FBMI with “Philippine Relief Fund” in the memo section, or go to www.fbchammond.com to give online. Your help of any amount will make a difference. Relief eﬀorts on a small island north of Cebu that was hit by the typhoon. Bro. Goodpaster and others organized relief to these needy people.
Sunday, November 10, 2013, we had “Friend Sunday” at International Baptist Church. We had a guest speaker from the U.S., Evangelist Jim Kilgore, and we gave each person in ascendancy that day a small bag of candy that our college students are making and selling to help with the expenses of Bible college. This was a great day with 307 in attendance, many saved, and 18 baptized. Our people did a great job. The following Sunday, November 17, there were many returning visitors through the followup efforts of our workers with another 10 baptisms. We are seeing great strides in the area of training workers and are looking with great enthusiasm to the year ahead. The theme for 2014 is “Grow with Us.” We will be implementing a new system to help our soul winners have a system to followup and disciple their converts into growing, soulwinning, and involved church members. Please pray as we roll out this new effort in the weeks ahead.
MEET A FILIPINO HYLANDER
Genil “Neil” Silva is one of our youngest Hyles-Anderson College of the Philippines students, but also one of our most fired-up soul winners. Neil was reached by International Baptist Church at Dumaguete through the efforts of Bro. Jason MacRae taking our teenagers soul winning on Sunday afternoons. Neil was found in an internet cafe, a popular hang-out for many young people with limited resources and nothing else to do. He trusted Christ as his Savior and became faithful to church. He has become a great soul winner and often makes the prayer request on Wednesday evenings for “more souls saved!” Although Neil has been able to lead much of his family to Christ, they are unable to support him in Bible college. Please pray for Neil and our other students who are being trained to have an impact for Christ in Asia and throughout the world. Visit www.hylesandersonph.com to learn more.
We are in the process of looking for a new property for our church. For nearly three years we’ve been in the same location and it is time for us to ﬁnd a more permanent location; a place where our money is put to better use. Land in our area that is accessible by roads is PHP1,500 ($35) per square meter. We’re praying that the Lord will provide for us a piece of property that is between 2,500 – 3,000 square meters. That would cost us between $87,500 – $105,000. Initially, we could setup a tent and build simple structures on a piece of property this size while we begin building stage by stage. Would you please pray, or consider what you might do to help?
To each and every person who has prayed and has given that we might bear fruit to your account, “Thank you!” It is truly a privilege to serve the Lord here and to see so many lives being changed through the Gospel, preaching and teaching of God’s Word, and personal discipleship. We feel very loved and wish you and your families a very merry Christmas! A property like the one pictured here would provide a place for our church to meet as well as our Bible college. Please pray with us!