Eric Johnson is the director of international missions for the Baptist Missionary Association of America. This is his third trip to the Philippines in the three years we have been here. This visit was concentrated working with our missionary partners Sam and Dawn Freeman visiting Mindanao and speaking at the BMAP conference and mid-year association meeting. It is important for our students at the Bible College to understand and participate in the local Baptist associations. So, we where glad to have almost our entire student body in attendance each night.
My First Visit to Guimaras
Guimaras is a small island between the two larger islands of Panay and Negros. Donna and I live on Negros in Bacolod. So, I took a ferry from Bacolod City, over to Iloilo City, then a small passenger shuttle over to Guimaras, to visit a recent Bible College graduate to encourage his missionary work among the people of that islands.
Guimaras is a beautiful, less spoiled island known as the “Mango” capital of the Philippines.
Kenneth Avencena, missionary to Guimaras traveled with me from Bacolod and then we rode together on his motorcycle all over the island visiting his outreaches and Bible Studies. Lunch was provided: Bangus, a local fish, rice and fish soup.
After lunch there were two more children’s outreaches and I was looking forward getting back to my room and resting. But, a 12 hour “brown out”, power outage, made for an uncomfortable night.
Sunday was a great day of worship. Kenneth preached, I sang and enjoyed meeting the congregation of the growing mission.
Take notice of the mother holding the baby in the bottom right photo. This one month old little girl has severe cleft palate. There is help for these children, but the cost is still around $2,000.00 US. If any one would be interested in helping contact me and I can send pictures of her to you.
We love to visit the work our students are doing. J.R. Suico, missionary to the Island of Leyte, was guest speaker at a local church, and David Perez, a current student, was asked to lead music at the association. Here’s Donna with one of our staff member’s little girl, and me with a group of students being rewarded for helping transport bedding for our up coming Bible conference at the Bible College. Filipinos LOVE “Jollibees”, a Filipino version of McDonalds.
\Darlene Carey Christian Academy
Praise the Lord, our first matching fund drive was met. We now have four class rooms paid for with eight to go. Please consider helping in anyway you can. We would love to dedicate classrooms in memory or in honor of anyone giving.
Every Tuesday evening we host, and I teach, a Bible study for expats and Filipinos. It has been a great outreach. We are always surprised how God puts people in our path who are longing for American fellowship and a relationship with the Lord.
We will depart the Philippines for furlough March 19. After a stop off in Los Angeles we will head on to Texas. It is still early but please contact us to visit your church, WMA, AWANA groups, VBS, anything we might could do to promote and help your church be better informed about BMA missions. We plan to be based in the following areas:
March & April with our daughter in Jacksonville, Texas
May with our daughter in Columbia, Missouri
June with my Mom in Huntsville, Alabama
July with our Home church in Magnolia, Arkansas
Found this article from Paradise Praises. Thought it would be relevant for all our churches hosting furloughing missionaries.
Here are 5 Ways to Bless Missionaries on Furlough
1. The biggest financial cost for furloughing missionaries is transportation. Loan them a vehicle and car seats. Most foreign missionaries will return to the US for furlough by plane. They will need transportation and (if they have small children) car seats that meet the current safety regulations. If you can provide a borrowed vehicle you will bless your missionary tremendously.
2. The second financial burden is travel lodging. Offer them lodging. While missionaries enjoy and occasional hotel stay, hospitality with old and new friends is usually preferable, and generally fits the budget better. Remember, your missionaries are keeping their field expenses current, as well as paying for their furlough travel expenses, often out of just their regular monthly support. Offering housing, meals, gift cards (for gas, restaurants, etc.) while they travel can meet some of those furlough needs while helping their budget stretch.
3. Check on clothing needs. Depending on where your missionary family serves they may or may not have clothing appropriate to the US season/or area in which they are visiting. Ask about specific needs for shoes, coats, Sunday clothes, suites, etc. A stateside visit in the winter could require a whole new wardrobe. The quality of clothing available in some countries is also quite low and an adult can wear out their wardrobe in 2-3 years just with normal washing.
4. Check on their educational and medical needs. Do you have homeschooling or Sunday school/VBS materials you have outgrown, but they may need? Are you in the optical, dental, or medical profession, and could offer your missionaries free appointments as a tax deduction to you and a huge blessing to them?
5. Provide for special needs and shipping things back to the field. Find out what projects your missionaries have going currently. What are their current needs? What are some larger ticket items that they haven’t been able to get with regular support? Can you give for their travel fund, shipping materials to the field fund, their building fund, computer upgrades, ministry equipment, tools, etc?
Some of these things could even be asked in advance of your missionaries’ arrival, to give you, your family and your church time to work towards meeting their needs and being a blessing.
Remember, missionary furlough is not a vacation. Yes, family, rest and relaxation is very important, but, most missionaries today can’t wait to get back. Furlough is basically a refunding time. The average missionary needs to recoup one third of their support after a two or three year assignment.
PLEASE PRAY FOR OUR FILIPINO MISSIONARIES AND CHURCH PLANTS:
KEVIN BERAYO – AHGU MOUNTAIN CHURCH MISSION
KENNETH AVENCENA -GUIMARAS ISLAND MISSION
JUNMAR – E.B. MAGDALONA CHURCH MISSION
ALFRED SUICO – LEYTE CHURCH MISSION
GENESIS FAITH MERANO – TALISAY (BARANGAY 15) CHURCH MISSION
JON REY NAVARRTE – KATILINGBAN CHURCH PLANT
Our ambitious vision to take the Gospel to all of Asia
F R O M S T A N
We were glad to welcome Doug and Diane Lee back from furlough.
We will host our fifth annual Student Lead Pastor’s Conference at the Bible College this month. U.S. Navy Chaplain Dondoy Biadog, a member of the first graduation class of the Bible College, is our guest speaker.
I’ll be headed to Mindanao in mid-November to teach and preach in some tribal churches. Please remember me in prayer during this trip.
pray, Pray, PRAY!
F R O M D O N N A
As always we have been busy, maybe too busy. We are grateful that you always remember us in prayer every step of the way.
Please consider helping with the funding of the Darlene Carey Christian Academy. Our missionary partners Jimmy and Julie Walker are working so hard on this. Next month we will have photos of our ground breaking for the building. We are hoping to finish the building as one project and not have to stop due to running our of funds.
We praise God for each of you and thank you for all your prayers, love, and financial support.
Our work is completely focused on making sure the Gospel is taught in our weekly home Bible study, the sending of the Gospel to Southeast Asian countries, the training of pastors and missionaries at the Bible College and church planting in the Philippines and all over Southeast Asia. Would you help us? $1,000.00 a year goes a long way here, helping us train church planters, send missionaries and train students. Click on the donate button below, locate the Scroggins/Philippine fund and prayerfully consider contributing to help us. We love you all.
Please Pray For: Doug & Diane Lee – Talisay City Danny & Rita Ballard – Manila Don Newsom – Iloilo Sam & Dawn Freeman – Tangub Filomeno & Lisa Kakilala – Iloilo Doug and Nonoy Kiper – Fabrica Cris & Alisha Samson – On Furlough Jimmy & Julie Walker – Talisay City Bible College Student Scholarships
Stay up-to-date with The Scroggins and their work in the Philippines by visiting their website and checking-out their blog!