Reeve's Supporters Newsletter - September 2019
Dancing Filipino style was never in the mission job description!!
Here at City Gates Coron we had great fun celebrating all things Filipino, costume, music, dance and food. It was only made even more fun or distressing for the audience by watching us take part in a traditional Filipino dance along with the teachers and staff. It is safe to say that Philippines’ Got Talent is not missing our dancing talent!!
Filipino Week Celebrations
The end of August saw City Gates Academy pre-school celebrating Filipino week with a special day including the parents. All the children dressed up in amazing costumes that had been made by the parents from recycled materials. The children competed in group dances.
The parents exercised their culinary skills and cooked dishes from 2 different regions of the Philippines, Cebu and Pampanga, the parents also used all their creative skills and experience to design and create 2 large pieces of artwork from recycled materials. It was amazing to see what could be made from what is thrown away.
We had the daunting task of judging along with two other guests all the competition categories. We were all pleased that the results were 2 wins each.
The whole event was finished of with a‘boodle fight’.
City Gates Coron Parents
The alpha course for the parents continues and the week after discussing the bible session, we had a really exciting development during devotions. Some of the mums got out their Bibles given to them on the alpha course and showed more genuine interest. For some they had not read the Bible before and had no idea where to start. We approached the idea of a Bible study and opportunity for us to help them with this. They all agreed, and a few showed real enthusiasm. We felt very encouraged by this and also by the responses to the alpha weekend day away.
Weekly Bible Study
It is great to have the opportunity to and laundry but also trying to get to all been different in their style and encourage and begin to disciple these know more of the island. setting but all have been marked with women.
It is great that we are now seeing more the ‘Lechon’ or hog roast to our UK of the parents also attending church and friends! supporting with cooking for the kid’s club outreaches.
City Gates Church,Coron
We are seeing an increase in people coming to Church, although this is not yet consistent. There is a core group of regular church members, it is acknowledged there is a need to focus on discipleship and developing these regular church members to be ready and equipped to support and disciple new people in the future. Pastora Riza is doing great working with the young people who are key to supporting outreaches and to engage potential newcomers we may get from future Alpha courses in the schools.
There is also some growth in the weekly prayer meetings and Bible study.
This month a focus for preaching has been on faith. We have both had opportunity to preach (with Pastora interpreting).
Life on Coron
We are settling into life here and becoming more used to the culture and how Island life is. We continue with our Tagalog language course and practice this whenever we can, lunchtime with the teachers and staff provides a good opportunity for this. We are gradually understanding more words when listening to conversations, everyone is great at helping us to learn more each day.
We have attended a number of birthday celebrations since being here. They have all been different in their style and setting but all have been marked with spaghetti and cake! Two we were served the ‘Lechon’ or hog roast to our UK friends!
We are still living at City Gates and although have been looking for somewhere to rent it is proving difficult. We have looked at 2 properties at either end of the scale, the first was a new build with all we would need, but very expensive, the second was more as you would say as ‘native’. It was reached via a dirt track, then over a bamboo bridge and had no running water, but it was very cheap! Most accommodation is generally geared to tourists and costs are currently out of our budget. Please pray for opportunities for places to come available at an affordable price.
While out shopping we the opportunity to have a conversation with a store assistant in one of the local shops that we regularly go into, it started with her asking where we were from. When we explained that we were missionaries she began to share a desire to be a missionary herself as a child and difficulties she was now experiencing in her life that was preventing her from going to church. She became a little emotional, we are getting used to the openness Filipino’s display with ease, we took the opportunity to ask if she would like us to pray for her which she did.
Our days off are currently filled by either doing the usual jobs of food shopping and laundry but also trying to get to know more of the island.
We have found a couple of nice coffee shops that have reasonable Wi-Fi for Coron!! In one we had the opportunity to get chatting with the manager, a lady from China, we have spoken to her a few times since. We hope to build more relationships with expats in town in time.
Outreaches & Feeding Programs
It has been so positive to a see a growth in numbers at each of the 4 kids clubs. The 4 join together once a month at the church for a big celebration.
September's joint kids club was a great success with 73 children attending. We had a time of action worship songs, games, bibles story and craft following on the theme of the ‘fruits of the spirit’. All this was followed by food and a chance for the children to play on the outside equipment which they loved.
Food & the Art of Filipino cooking
One of the island highlights and talking point this month has been the opening of McDonalds on Coron. It has been so busy!!
During the Filipino week celebrations, we tasted some delicious foods from other regions. The way the rice was served in a banana leaf woven basket was fantastic and I have asked to be shown how to weave the baskets.
We have both celebrated big Birthdays, thank you to all the cards and messages from you all. To help us celebrate we opened a Just Giving page to raise funds to replace the leaking roof on the ‘clubhouse’ at the dumpsite, thanks to your generosity we not only raised enough to repair this roof but also we will be able to provide shelter for one of the other kid’s clubs in a different area, that currently has nowhere to run when it rains. We will keep you posted to the progress of these two projects.
Praise and Prayer
We praise God for the success of the joint kids’ clubs at City Gates Church.
Please pray that the enthusiasm of the parents attending the bible study continues and they start to enjoy God’s Word.
Exciting! Future Alpha Courses in Schools - It was so exciting to have been given the go ahead to run alpha in 2 local schools. We plan to start these in October. Please hold this in your prayers.
We are encouraged by the contacts we are making in town, please pray that we will have and take these opportunities to share with the people we meet.
Please hold our continued learning of Tagalog in your prayers.
Please pray that we find somewhere suitable for us to rent, within our limited budget.
Thank you for taking the time to read our newsletter, we are so thankful for all your support and could not be doing any of this work without you.
Love from Andrea and James
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