Projects and Missionaires in Asia/Pacific
Recent Stories from Asia/Pacific

MOTHER TO MOTHER

Unless it is brought to our attention, we do not always grasp the magnitude of what it means to oversee an orphanage. Charity Graff and her husband, Evan, have operated Gentle Hands in the Philippines since 2002, and she carries a heavy burden for the children with whom she is involved.

A rather different aspect of the acquiring of orphanage children is related in her recent newsletter:

“She came in. Angry and hard. As expected. I asked questions; gently, but firmly … letting her know this was serious. She answered. Without much adieu, with tears in her eyes, she held the pen awkwardly, poised.

I held my breath for a moment, but she signed … in faith that my promise of caring for and loving her child was true—the document terminating her rights as mother over her child that she had not seen in over 10 years!”

You may question the circumstances. Charity had arrived at the overflowing jail where the stench of unbathed human bodies permeated the corridors. She was ushered into the warden’s office, where she waited for the mother she was to interview … the one who was to sign rights to her child over to Gentle Hands.

As Charity left the confines of the prison, the burden of reality weighed heavily upon her shoulders. The woman’s son was now in Charity’s care, and would be a candidate for adoption.

Charity prayed for strength to love this boy, as a mother should, tenderly and to prepare him so that one day, when his adoptive mother would come to pick him up, Charity can, too, surrender him to her … and wanting her to understand the sacrifice made so that he could be her son.

Click here to partner with Gentle Hands orphanage in the Philippines: Project #065-0225

 

 

FLOODING IN BANGLADESH LEAVES NEEDS

Bangladesh, has recently experienced severe flooding, leaving people homeless, starving, and in alarming conditions. Church of God World Missions Asia/Pacific Field Director Andrew Binda received this message from its leadership:

“We hope you can pray for us and the villages enduring these horrible conditions and hard times. We ask if you can give us some support to help the families that have been affected by the flooding. The families have no food, water, or shelter.” The message further stated what some may not consider: “Many of the animals needed to support families living in steady and healthy places are dying due to the flooding, as well. The people of Bangladesh are suffering deplorable conditions and they need your help! The last time Bangladesh flooded like this was in the 1980’s. Please keep us and Bangladesh in your prayers.”

Bishop Binda immediately sent a small allotment from the limited funds on hand to help. International World Missions Dr. Director David Griffis and Assistant Director Dr. M. Thomas Propes have also responded, opening the door for many donors to join in and from their own means make a substantial difference. Their petition is: “Please help us respond immediately when disaster looms over people like the darkest night.”

We are admonished in Isaiah 58:10: “Feed the hungry, and help those in trouble. Then your light will shine out from the darkness and the darkness around you will be as bright as noon.

Bangladesh is not a highly-industrialized nation with reserves for such situations. It is up to you and me to be God’s helping hands for those who have lost all but what they can carry in their arms.

Give now, give liberally, give in love!

Click here to make a difference in Bangladesh: Project 765-0053-012

Bangladesh Flood Relief from Church of God World Missions on Vimeo.

MARK CHEN: FORMER REPRESENTATIVE TO TAIWAN PASSES

Bishop Chen Yung-Chia (Mark Chen), who served as Church of God representative to Taiwan from 1984 to 2008, passed away Wednesday, September 6, 2017, at the age of 88. He was the founder of the Church of God in Taiwan, having continued to build 11 church buildings in mainland China (his homeland) from the church base in Taichung.

“Pastor Mark Chen Day” was a proclamation from General Overseer Tim Hill given to Mark and Ruth Chen. Regional superintendent Tommy Smith and longtime missionary to Taiwan, Crystal Walker, are presenting the award.

Pastor Chen also had a vibrant ministry among the underground Chinese house churches, which grew to over 3,000 weekly. He and many of his church members helped smuggle Bibles into China to thousands who had never owned a Bible in their lives. His local church gave liberally to World Missions so the Gospel could be propagated regularly in a country with millions of souls.

Regional superintendent of Southern Pacific, Tommy Smith, tells us: “As a missionary, the Lord allowed me to meet many ‘generals’ of the faith that serve on the frontlines of God’s harvest field. Pastor Mark Chen was certainly one of those. He will be missed!”

Former missionary to Taiwan (1982-1992), Crystal Walker remembers Pastor Chen as an amazing man of many talents and gifts. She says: “Bless you, Pastor Chen, and may you now live in the presence of Jesus, who once brought you back from the dead only to give you life eternal later.”

Each year, Pastor Chen prepared a beautiful church calendar featuring his lovely Chinese calligraphy artwork (which ranks among the finest in the world) for Chinese Christians worldwide.

Mark Chen is survived by his wife, Ruth, three adult children (one of whom, David and his wife Cynthia, serves as the pastoral team and current Church of God representative), and six grandchildren.

You may send condolences to the Chen family via David’s email, chenliu@hotmail.com

 

THE SALVATION STORY OF PREMADASA GINIGALGODA

Premadasa Ginigalgoda is the overseer of Sri Lanka, an island country located southeast of India, and is home to many cultures, languages and races. The 2016 population estimation is 21.20 million, and Buddhists comprise 70 percent of that number. Buddhism has a 3,000-year history in India. The Church of God entered Sri Lanka in 1997.

After World War 2, Sri Lanka experienced great poverty, which has continued its hold on the nation since. As a young child, Premadasa had a pet calf, but because they had no money, and his sister was seriously ill, his calf was sold to save her life. His mother encouraged him to go to the Buddhist temple at age 12 where he could earn money, be educated, and have status. Yet, Premadasa knew the Buddhist life was not the answer to eternal life. Frustrated, he began reading the Bible at age 21, although he did not understand it. However, his heart was captured by Jesus Christ. Premadasa realized he was not to worship idols. This caused quite a stir among the other monks. When asked by the priest why he was disobeying, he stated he would respect only the precepts and the good things, and live according to his conscience.

Destiny would have it that Premadasa found a Christian pamphlet, and in his sleep one night, revelation came. He heard the voice of Jesus say … “Son, I love you and gave My life for you!” An overwhelming peace came over him. The Lord led him to a pastor who provided him a home and instruction; later Premadasa attended Bible school and went into the ministry.

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ANDREW BINDA REPORTS ON SL2C: MANILA, PHILIPPINES

Manila, Philippines is a city of contrasts. Like all world class cities, it is all there in Manila: tall skyscrapers, malls, condominiums, casinos, 5-star hotels, restaurants, a booming business district and people; almost two million. In Manila, you will find the young and old, the rich and the poor, and yes, light and darkness. Yet in the midst of the darkness, there is a ray of light- Church of God Marriott Manila, led by Pastor AJ Velasco.

Field Director Andrew Binda; Manila Metro Overseer Navaro; COG Mariott Manila Pastor A. J. Velasco

Two years before COG World Missions dreamed of the Send the Light to the Cities initiative, pastor AJ had the vision to reach his city for the Lord.  In his own words, we must, “Go to the city and make our presence felt because that is where the people are,” it is where they study, work, live and are entertained. Upon choosing Manila as one of the Lighthouse Cities, we decided instead of “reinventing the wheel”, we would partner with this existing, but relatively new ministry to accomplish the vision of Church of God World Missions Director, Dr. David M. Griffis. To quote Dr. Griffis, “A church that loves the world with a John 3:16 passion cannot take its evangelism mandate seriously without looking to the cities.”

Presently, Church of God Marriott Manila has over 200 congregants on a weekly basis.  Converts are trained to become “disciples making disciples.”  A facility has been secured in a strategic location, which will function as an operational hub for the ministry. This facility will be used as a Discipleship Training and Church Planting Center. The cost to secure the facility is $250 000 USD and we have set this amount as our goal for this particular project. We are hoping to raise these funds prior to the upcoming 2018 General Assembly. Several states have pledged their support, however we are still in need of other donors. Please prayerfully consider giving to the Lighthouse City of Manila -Church of God Marriot Manila.  Donations should be sent to Church of God World Missions, PO Box 8016, Cleveland, TN 37320: Project #102-9435-006.

With the help of the Lord and through your faithful giving, we will transform this city from a City of Darkness to a City of Light.  Jesus Christ is the Light of the World (John 8:12) and according to John 12:46 that Light has come into the world.  I have come as a light into the world, that whoever believes in Me should not abide in darkness. NKJV.

– Andrew Binda is the Field Director for COGWM Asia/Pacific

Click here to support the SL2C work in Manila: Project 102-9435-006

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SEMINAR IN MIDDLE EAST

A seminar themed “Youth Leadership to Spread the Gospel” was recently held in Joseph Colony Lahore where earlier this year Muslims burned 125 Christian homes. Through the seminar, the 75 participants were restored by the Word of God, and are focusing on spreading Jesus’ Gospel.

The workshops featured evangelism and soul winning, plus the attendees learned new ideas and practical strategies for effective leadership in the Great Commission.

Those present expressed their desire for more seminars of instruction, and felt the timing perfect for the beginning and conclusion of the seminar. Another idea was to improve the location where the seminar is held. Everyone enjoyed the excellent food provided.

To God be the glory for the growth of His kingdom in this area of the Middle East, and for those who were restored and encouraged in the work of the Lord! Another seminar is planned soon entitled, “Obedience to the Great Commission.”

Click Here to support and partner with Project #731-1136-233