Thousands attend first conference-wide care group harvest celebration in the eastern Visayas
Nearly 10,000 Seventh-day Adventists in the eastern Visayas congregated at the Ormoc City Superdome in Leyte to attend the first conference-wide Care Group Harvest Celebration on September 7, 2019.
With the aim to nurture, disciple and reclaim members of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, the celebration brought together the largest number of attendees from different churches under the East Visayan Conference.
The harvest celebration kicked-off with a grand parade joined by the Ormoc City PNP Highway Patrol Group (HPG), the Adventist Response Team (ART), the Central Philippine Union Conference (CPUC) and East Visayan Conference (EVC) administrators and staff, and the care group members who came in uniform and with their banners as they marched around the city.
Pastor Samuel Salloman, president of East Visayan Conference, expressed his thanks and appreciation to all for their active participation. He also acknowledged each care group by welcoming them one by one.
Pastor Amrafel S. Magpusao, the IEL/NDR coordinator of East Visayan Conference, recognized each care group by giving them certificates of appreciation for their participation in the Integrated Evangelism Lifestyle (IEL) in Nurturing, Discipleship and Reclamation (NDR) program of the church.
Honorable Lalaine Marcos, a councilor of Ormoc City attended the opening ceremonies, and with her came the barangay captain Engr. Esteban Laorente. Marcos conveyed her gratitude to the organizers for choosing Ormoc City as the venue of the event, and to all the Seventh-day Adventists in the eastern Visayas for coming. “I assure you that you are safe here. I would like to welcome you all to the city of beautiful people,” she concluded.
Representatives from each care group shared testimonies of the different ministries they conducted to reach out to people and to nurture them to a deeper relationship with the Lord.
Pastor Lowell Quinto, the IEL-NDR coordinator of Central Philippine Union Conference congratulated the EVC administration for supporting the IEL-NDR program. He also shared important points on how to welcome and nurture the new members of the church. “I am encouraging everyone to join and be involved in care group ministry,” he said further during his inspirational message.
Pastor Agapito Catane, Jr., in his message on Sabbath reminded all members to become God’s channels in spreading His love to the people around them. He also reiterated the purpose of the church. “Brothers and sisters in Christ, let’s give our 100% commitment to God. Let’s give our best to Him because He gave His best to us,” he said.
The celebration culminated with the baptism of 276 new believers at the Zorex Resort in Ormoc City.
The Harvest Celebration was the climax of a concerted effort by the EVC and CPUC departmental directors who held evangelistic campaigns in and around Ormoc City with the support of the district pastors and care groups in the respective areas: Pastor Abner Dinoy, Stewardship director of CPUC preached in Bayog, Ormoc; Berdandino Maniego, communication/PARL director of CPUC went to San Jose, Ormoc; Pastor Lowell L. Quinto, the IEL-NDR coordinator of CPUC preached in Balugo, Albuera, Leyte; and Pastor Mariano Salloman, the ministerial secretary of EVC went to Bawod, Villaba, Leyte.
Pastor Eliezer Barlizo, the executive secretary of Central Philippine Union Conference commended the EVC administration, the district pastors, and the church elders for their unwavering support to the work of God. He also expressed his appreciation to the members of the Adventist Digital Missionaries Association for playing an active role in documenting the events. “Thank you so much and congratulations. May God bless you all,” he concluded.
Seventh-day Adventist beliefs are meant to permeate your whole life. Growing out of scriptures that paint a compelling portrait of God, you are invited to explore, experience and know the One who desires to make us whole.