Dear Brethren in Christ,
May the grace and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ be upon you and your family!
Join us in thanking the Lord for His power and provision as we partnered with Him in His works the past weeks. By God’s grace and strength, the brethren were able to undertake evangelistic and discipleship activities in various ministry areas and outreaches. Here’s a rundown of the activities that kept the brethren always holding on to God’s hands and promises for guidance, wisdom and strength;
Relief Goods Distribution:
Relief goods were distributed to brethren in poor community outreaches of the ministry including those from the tribal areas who were affected by drought. The brothers and sisters from Caraga region distributed relief goods in the tribal areas of Lawan-lawan, Malahone, Pag-ao (all in Agusan del Norte) and Kalipay, Gingoog City, Misamis Oriental. Moreover, the brethren from the ministry outreaches in Lantungan, Zamboanga del Sur and Kulambugan, Lanao del Norte received relief goods from the ministry leaders in Iligan City. In Cotabato, the poor brethren from the community and tribal outreaches particularly; Libungan, Magpet, and Kapangi, were recipients of relief goods distributed by the leaders from Katingawan. Furthermore, the ministry leaders in Bukidnon handed out relief goods to poor brethren from outreaches in Kulawan, Banisilan, Kilikili, Wao and Maca-opao.
Feeding of Children:
Feeding of children of Bible study contacts was also done during the distribution of relief goods in Cotabato and Caraga regions. Very recently (last September 7, 2019), the brethren from Katingawan conducted their first feeding program for the children of their bible study contacts from the Manobo tribe in Makilala, Cotabato. Aproximately 100 children were fed with nutritious foods and were joined by almost 70 adults who were also treated to a sumptuous meal (lunch). We hope to do this activity regularly and duplicate it in other tribal areas.
Free Medical and Dental Mission:
By God’s grace, the ministry just conducted free medical and dental mission in Fortchacu 3, Kalilangan, Bukidnon last September 7, 2019. Approximately 213 patients were able to avail of the free medical and dental services rendered by a dentist and six medical doctors. The dentist served 28 patients while the medical doctors were able to treat 185people (children and adults). Just like the previous free clinics, the patients heard the Gospel first before they were attended to by the doctors. Interestingly, approximately 15 Muslims from the Iranon tribe availed of the free medical clinic. The Muslim friends were very receptive of the Gospel and signified their desire to be more oriented of the Kitab (Bible). The brethren from Kalilangan will be following them up. Incidentally, these Iranun muslims (and some others) are beneficiaries of ACMI’s livelihood program. This free medical and dental clinic was jointly sponsored by the Arise Christian Ministries, Inc.; the Municipal Health Unit of Kalilangan, Bukidnon and the 1st Special Forces Company of the Philippine Army which is based near the vicinity of the venue. The soldiers aside from securing the place, also served as medical staff during the free clinic by taking blood pressures of the patients. All of the military men were also given the chance to hear the Gospel. The next free medical clinic will be conducted in Makilala, North Cotabato, Lord willing.
Training of Leaders:
The regular Leader’s Development Program (LDP) were conducted in the three regional centers of Caraga, Bukidnon and Cotabato. Moreover, the regular Bible study of the leaders of the Tiboli outreaches in South Cotabato was also conducted. Furthermore, module two of the Servant Leaders Training for the Higaonon brethren was carried out as well.
New doors for ministry outreach:
Praise God for opening new doors for ministry outreach. Two areas in Negros Occidental (in the Visayas); namely, Dancalan Ilog and Bacolod and one in Kibawe, Bukidnon (Mindanao) were recently opened. Families of Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) who were reached out in United Arab Emirates, came home to share the Gospel to family members and relatives. By God’s grace, they responded positively as they heard the Gospel and are willing to be followed up. The brethren from nearby ministry areas volunteered to do the follow up. To God be the Glory!
The ministry’s national headquarter in Cagayan de Oro City is almost finished. We praise God for His provision. The hall can now accommodate more or less 150 people, the mezzanine floor can accommodate 30 persons for overnight stay and small meetings. The basement will be used for kids’ ministry and as lodging house for guests/transients who would visit Cagayan de Oro. The new bedroom where women disciples stay can also accommodate other guests. The construction and renovation of the national center is being carried out to accommodate the regular leaders’ meetings of ACMI which is done twice a year. We covet your prayers for the various concerns of the ministry. Blessings!
Pastor Bernardo A. Mendoza
Feeding in Makilala, North Cotabato
in Lawan-lawan, Agusan del Norte in Magpet, North Cotabato
Training of Free Medical & Dental Mission in
Higaonon Leaders Fortchacu 3, Bukidnon
Dear Brethren in Christ,
"Let’s praise and thank God together for choosing us to be His children even before He created the universe." (Eph. 1:4-5).
Join us in thanking the Lord for His leading and works in our midst the past months. The Lord has continually blessed us with material and spiritual blessings so that we can attend to the needs of our indigent countrymen especially the tribal folks in the hinterlands of Mindanao. Here are some highlights of the various activities the ACMI had conducted the past months.
The month of April ended with a skills training on bag making (raw materials are plastic wastes) which was conducted by the Kalilangan, Bukidnon local ministry, for the Iranons (Muslim) and Higaonon tribes from the provinces of Bukidnon and Lanao del Sur. The recipients of the training are the tribal folks they are trying to reach out for the Lord. The resource persons/trainers were from TESDA, a government agency.
First week of May, again the brethren from Kalilangan made themselves busy by distributing school supplies to the children of their Iranon contacts. Meanwhile, the leaders from Nasipit, Agusan del Norte distributed school supplies to the children of their Higaonon contacts in Kalipay, Malahone, and Pag-ao.
Middle of May, the Brethren in Nasipit busied themselves with a leadership training for the Higaonon leaders. The higaonon leaders from kalipay, Gingoog city; Malahone & Pag-ao, both in Nasipit and those from Lawan-lawan, Las Nieves, Agusan del Norte, were taught on how to prepare message, lead bible studies, witnessing and many other ministry skills.
Also in May, the brethren from Cebu ACMI visited the ministry outreach in Guihulngan, Negros Oriental. They distributed goods and used clothes to the delight of the brethren, many of whom are indigents. The brethren travelled for almost 8 hours from Cebu city to Guihulngan, including an hour of boat journey from Bato, Cebu to Dumaguete, Negros Oriental. They are planning to visit the Taluto outreach which is located in the boundaries of Negros Oriental and Negros Occidental. Lord willing, they intend to conduct this gift giving on July. They will join the Taluto brethren in celebrating the founding anniversary of ACMI.
Before the month of May ended, the Katingawan local ACMI ministry conducted a relief distribution in Banocagon, Pigkawayan, North Cotabato. Few kilos of rice and some other dry goods were distributed to the needy residents of Banocagon who were affected by drought. Before the goods distribution, the Gospel was preached and by God’s grace many received Jesus as Lord and savior. Many of those who accepted the Lord Jesus are now being followed up by the Abacanhan brethren. The relief distribution was requested by the barangay officials and was facilitated by a bible study contact.
Last June 8, the ACMI conducted a free medical clinic in the hinterlands of Casiklan, Las Nieves, Agusan del Norte. A team of 6 medical doctors and about 14 working staff travelled from Cagayan de Oro city to Casiklan, passing thru rough roads in the middle of a forest. They were joined by the brethren from Nasipit (one of them is a doctor) and Butuan city. There were 279 patients who were able to avail of the free medical service and medicines provided by ACMI. Like the previous free clinics, the patients heard the Gospel first before they received free consultation and medicines. After, the free medical clinic, the brethren passed thru the Lawan-lawan outreach, about 5 kilometers from Casiklan.
June 23 was a national witnessing day for ACMI. Though witnessing is done spontaneously as the Lord leads, we agreed to make June 23 a national witnessing day, wherein all members after the worship services, go out and share the Gospel. Some visited their friends, others went to parks, hospitals and malls. Several others went house to house. Other ministry areas decided to invite friends during their anniversary celebrations and shared the Gospel to them. Praise God for the many people who heard the message of the Cross.
Before the month of June ended, sewing machines were handed over to leaders of a ministry outreach in a Muslim area in the hinterlands of Cotabato. The leaders are now believers of the Lord Jesus and serve as contact persons of ACMI’s local missionaries to the Muslims. To God be the glory.
By God’s grace, ACMI celebrated its 20th founding anniversary last June (celebrations are being conducted during the months of June to August by the various ministry areas and outreaches). We praise God for His faithfulness in our midst. He raised up leaders who are willing to serve His people, and brethren who are desirous to know and follow Him. We give God all the glory for making all these possible.
Our national center in Cagayan de Oro City is being renovated, to accommodate more people during trainings and meetings. The center also serves as living quarters for ladies being trained in discipleship. Also, the center serves as temporary lodging house of brethren and visitors from other areas who have business in Cagayan de Oro. Moreover, some sick brethren stay in the center while undergoing medical treatment here in Cagayan de Oro. The construction is more than 50% finished, and we covet your prayers that He will provide the rest of the needs for the construction.
To you brethren, thank you very much for co-laboring with us in the Gospel. The Lord bless you and keep you.
BERNARDO A. MENDOZA
Dear Brethren in Christ,
Christian greetings from Mindanao, Philippines!
May this letter find you growing in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ!
Join us in thanking the Lord for His many ways of leading and directing us the past months. Early January, the ACMI Board met and discussed future ministry directions especially, ACMI’s work on indigenous people groups. Other plans that were discussed were the livelihood programs for the poor among us, equipping leaders and members for more effective infiltrative witnessing and disciple-making. We look forward to 2020 where the leaders agreed to hold a general national conference (we do this every 4 years). We covet your prayers for these ministry directions and plans.
We thank God for the very encouraging responses of 12 Tiboli leaders/pastors who are regularly attending the meeting and Bible Studies in Tiboli, South Cotabato. They are thankful to the Lord for the in-depth study of God’s word, passing them to their members in more systematic way, and applying them to their lives. In God’s time and as He provides, we will extend livelihood assistance/projects to this indigenous people group, to help them alleviate their economic needs (they are poor and marginalized). They are located in far-flung communities in the mountains of Tiboli, South Cotabato which could scarcely be reached by any government service, such as school, water, light and medical facilities. Some of the roads leading to their areas are almost impassable during rainy days, hence these pastors hike several kilometers to visit their members.
The Higaonon brethren in Agusan experienced a breakthrough, not only spiritually, where many members of their tribes are coming to Christ, but also some self-sufficiency in their economic needs. They can now sell vegetable and fruit products harvested from their farms (courtesy of the livelihood projects), and can now have three square meals a day. God is really faithful, in blessing the work of their hands. To God be the Glory!
Last February 2, the ministry conducted a free medical mission in Banisilan, South Cotabato. Four doctors served almost 200 patients. Medicines were given free, but most of all the patients heard the Gospel. Pictures attached.
We are thankful to the Lord for the continued support (prayer and financial) of Christian churches and organizations (local and abroad). To all of you brethren, we are indeed grateful.
Jesus’ coming is very near. Let’s claim I Corinthians 15:58 - “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord”.
May God’s peace keep our hearts and mind in Christ Jesus.
In His vineyard,
Pastor Bernie Mendoza