Wallace H. Little
This report summarizes the information available to me concerning the work in the Philippine Islands during October, November and December 1971. But first, I need to make a correction of my last report.
I stated a church in Rizal had taken a stand for truth with reference to the institutional issues. This was not correct. I misunderstood the efforts of the liberal Brethren with this group to imply that it had been one with them for a time as it moved from its association with the First Christian Church to its present position. The mistake was mine in reading into the reports I received more than they in fact said. Connie Adams informed me the group in question bad never been with the institutional brethren. I did not intentionally report error and apologize to all for inadvertently doing so.
Eustaquio Lampa reported five baptized, two restored and two more prospects while Isidoro Manibag wrote of ten baptized in Kidapawan. Conrado Carbera, in spite of threats against his life from sectarians, for preaching the gospel, was able to baptize thirteen with ten more convinced of the truth but hesitant about obedience. There were two who actively opposed the teaching of Christ, and one totally uninterested. His work shows again the truth of Paul's teaching in 2 Tim. 3:12. Carbera is working with partial help from Linghanan Sendil, and providing the remainder of his needs by hiring himself out as a day laborer harvesting crops. Out of this came seven contacts which he later harvested for the Lord.
Ernesto Canon reported an eighteen mile walking-preaching trip into an otherwise inaccessible area with frequent opportunities to teach. In other work he told of fifteen baptisms from a-two day meeting in Sucan and two more in Say. He is trying to solve the oft-repeated problem of banding together these new disciples into functioning congregations. This underlines the need for more men to be supported.
Domingo Sumagaysay who started fulltime preaching in December, 1970 reported 27 baptized since then, with two liberal churches restored to their first love. He is currently trying to establish other churches. Zosimo Agduma wrote of four baptisms and two brethren (one elder and one deacon from a liberal group) restored. In His work from December 1970, until now, Bernardino Facunla, Sr., has taught and baptized 26 into Christ, establishing the church in the place where he lives. Rod Diego listed seven baptized in Makilala, Cotabato and summarized the work in that area from August through November (including five gospel meetings) as fifty baptized.
Santiago Ramos has successfully taught and baptized a Baptist and a Pentecostal preacher. Ruben Notarte in Bansalan told of twenty-eight baptized in three different locations plus a total of thirty-five as a result of a prolonged effort by a number of preachers in that general area. Some of these are individually reported above by the particular preacher involved. Romeo Quesada wrote of five taught and baptized by Quiriano Alipan in Zamboanga del sur. Finally Linghanan Sendil reported twentynine individuals comprising f our families came out of the liberal church in Bung to stand for the truth.
Rod Diego, and others, wrote of the death of Brother Bartolome Flores, along with eleven other Filipinos. They were gunned down from ambush. This is the second Christian I know of killed in that area in this manner in the last several months. Senseless killings such as these are all too common in that nation, emphasizing the need for the gospel there.
Rufo Samodal wrote of the boasting of a denominational preacher there who claimed he challenged me to a debate and I refused. If he has ever issued such a challenge, I am unaware of it. The only contact we had was a vain exchange of correspondence in which he tried to get me to force Samodal to cease teaching against his errors. I believe he thinks Samodal works for me! However, if he is so eager for a debate with me, I believe he can be accommodated; if not, he can be quieted down. To these ends, I sent Samodal propositions relating to God's true church.
Speaking of challenges and debates, Brother Leroy Sedgwick, presently residing in Henderson, Texas, is a "recently-returned American Missionary" to the Philippines. I presented propositions on the Philippine Bible College, previously signed by Connie Adams, to him. These dealt with the right of that school to exist and function as it does. He is not interested in a debate. I then contacted Brother Bob Buchanan to see if he is interested in such a discussion. Brother Buchanan is another of the so-called American "missionaries" to the Philippines, and an important member of the PBC staff. So far, I have received no answer from him. Much as I would like to see this business aired publicly, I agree with both Cecil Willis and Connie Adams that it is unlikely. I doubt the supporters have sufficient courage to agree to a debate in defense of their idol.
I am constantly humbled by expressions of concern by others. One man, not a member of the church, has twice sent me money to be forwarded to a brother in the Philippines. Having read these reports, he was sufficiently moved by the need to feel impelled to do something to help. His help was fairly substantial, too. Also, a brother from Canada sent money to help relieve the want and privation among Christians in the PI. I commend these examples to all who are also able.
Bits and Pieces
The Postmaster here informed me the West Coast dock strike has seriously tied up the flow of mail to all destinations, including the Philippines, which are served by the struck ports. He suggested any mail needed there within two or three months he sent by air. He had no idea when the backlog of boat mail would be reduced. Preparations by James P. Needham and Dudley R. Spears for their trip to the PI next spring seems to be well along, if not completed, judging from comments made in bulletins I receive. I anticipate much good teaching among brethren and aliens there from the work of these two men.
TRUTH MAGAZINE, XVI: 13, pp. 7-9