From the monthly archives:

May 2004

Visit to United States of Filipino Ministry

by Original Author on May 19, 2004

Originally posted by Elder Gus Harter

After two cancellations of appointments and a postponement for over a year we finally filled a schedule of meetings among our churches in America. The ministers from the Philippines, Manny Briva, Ronaldo Lopez, Dominador Lozada and Conrado Quinto preached ably and were well received. For me it was a joyful reunion of old friends and an introduction of our ministry in the Philippines to our churches in America. We traveled through 21 different States and spoke at 37 different churches. The kindness shown by each congregation was warm, hospitable, and generous. Thank you! Thank you!

The Filipino ministers called me the day we were to leave and wanted to know if we were still scheduled to go. They informed me if we were not going to America they were going to stay for a month at my house in Davao. I assured them we would be flying that day for I did not want my wife to entertain company for a month. We left Manila at 10:30 P.M., Wednesday, May 31. We passed through 12 time zones gaining 12 hours. We arrived in Atlanta at 6:30 A.M., Thursday, April 1. We rested well on the flight and arrived anxious to begin our meetings. My son-in-law Elder Lonnie Mozingo, Jr. was punctual to pick us up. He was a joyous one man reception committee.

Our first appointment was at Camp Creek Church served by Elder John Melvin. I have been extremely close to Camp Creek and John thru the years. I rejoiced to embrace them. Brother Bobby Garner and Wiley Puckett, members there, have been and are two of my dearest friends. Elders John Melvin, Keith Hollingsworth and Ken Still all ministers who were ordained at Bethany were there. We experimented with all five ministers speaking. They were all concerned not to take too much time but presented a good lesson. We continued that pattern of using all five Elders during the entirety of the trip. Brother Garner generously allowed me to use his personal pick up truck (a new fire engine red Dodge with covered bed). It was perfect for our purposes and was comfortable transportation.

On Friday through Sunday we enjoyed being with Bethany Church at their Annual meeting. Beside myself and the Filipino ministry they invited Elders Ronald Lawrence, Vernis Stanaland and Doyle Hurst. The meeting was well attended and all the Elders preached well. I was especially glad to renew my fellowship with Brother Stanaland, Lawrence and Hurst. All the Filipino handled themselves well. At the request of other ministers they filled appointments at several different churches in Atlanta during the annual meeting of Bethany. It was my privilege to serve Bethany for almost 30 years. I was encouraged by their continued prosperity under Elder Mozingo. My heart was made glad to be with them once more. Sunday afternoon we visited Shiloh Church in Loganville, served by Elder Ken Still. Two of our Filipinos had gone with Elder Don Farris to speak to Dallas Church while Elders Quinto and Lozada had gone with me to Shiloh. We enjoyed both good liberty and good fellowship. On Sunday night all of us attended Shoal Creek Church served by Elder Jimmy Fulmer. It was well attended with all five of us speaking. After the meeting we enjoyed a sumptuous meal. We particularly enjoyed spending time with Chris Fulmer who has meant so much to us in the Philippines. We appreciated these fine young man who took a year of his life to serve the Lord in the Philippines. That night we enjoyed the hospitality of the home of Brother Wiley Puckett and his wife Betty. They were kind and gracious hosts. Brother Puckett had been to the Philippines several times. It was a joy to be with him and Betty.

On Monday morning we traveled to Chula, Georgia to the home of Joseph Fletcher, a deacon of Eureka Church. Elder Jamey Tucker visited with us with Joseph and his wife Phylis during the afternoon. We then had supper at church enjoying a delicious meal. The Filipino ministers greatly enjoyed American food. The preaching service was blessed of God with each man giving an exposition of scripture. The members of Eureka were both kind and generous to us and have always been a friend to evangelism. May their tribe increase. Elder Jamey Tucker, their pastor is much loved among his own people and an able minister. That night we enjoyed the hospitality of the Fletcher’s home.

Tuesday morning we traveled to Plant City, Florida. I attempted to reach Elder David Crawford to have lunch with him on our way to south Florida. I wanted my Filipino brethren to have the privilege of meeting him and enjoying his fellowship. Brother David heard my request on his answering service and traveled about 200 miles to be with us in services at Little Union. He has my appreciation for his kindness to my brethren and for an unusual show of service and concern. We arrived in Plant City mid-afternoon to the home of Brother Julian Cunningham. We deposited the ministers at his mother’s home just down the street from his house. In concern, I asked about the condition of his mother. He answered she is doing extremely well. We buried her two months ago. I didn’t know whether to apologize at my ignorance or rejoice that his beloved mother was with the Lord. Beatrice, Julian’s wife made us an excellent supper and the Pastor, Elder Steve Wilkinson and his wife Gayle came to eat with us. Elder Wilkinson who recently accepted Little Union Church is enjoying excellent success in serving this wonderful flock. The evening service was well attended. I particularly enjoyed the preaching of the Filipino brethren. In the morning Julian asked me to speak to a Presbyterian prayer group he frequents on Wednesday morning. I had received letters from them that they prayed for our safety in the Philippines and for my wife with her medical difficulties. I spoke on five phases of salvation which was warmly received. I served Little Union over 30 years ago. Julian and his family were my very close friends and enjoyed renewing our fellowship.

On Wednesday morning I carried our brethren to visit my wife’s mother who was convalescing at home from a stay in the hospital. The visit was short because of an appointment she had. I enjoyed our visit and had prayer with her. She lives alone and my prayer was to ask our God to providentially guard over her. We left her home and drove to Winter Park to have lunch with my older brother and Sister, Bill Harter and Peg Patillo. Some of their families were there and our visit was especially enjoyable. They treated my Filipinos like family and served us a delicious Italian meal. We then drove to Winter Garden where I spent the first 18 years of my life. New Hope Church was our next stop. Under the leadership of their present Pastor Elder Glen Blanchard, they have greatly prospered. They sold their building and are building a new structure on acreage west of town. We met in a public building near Lake Apopka within a view of the home where I was reared. One of our ministers, Elder Ronaldo Lopez, because of his charismatic delivery was nicknamed Brother Blanchard of the Philippines. After the service Brother Glen said he will soon be called the Brother Lopez of America. After a time of fellowship we stayed at a local motel for the evening. I desired to see their new building but time would not allow that privilege. At the meeting it was especially good to see my wife’s aunt and uncle, T. and Dottie Teolis.

On my way back North, I made am appointment with Elder Jeff Harris for lunch in Tifton, Georgia. We met at Applebees for lunch. It was the first time Jeff had met three of our Filipino preachers. I updated him on the work in the Philippines and he rejoiced in the progress that had been made. He enjoined his renewed fellowship with Elder Dominador Lozada. I was reminded of our early labor together in those distant islands. We then drove to Roswell, Georgia to attend Union Church. The church is served by Elder Marty Smith. He is my son-in-law and a very able minister. We first visited with Elder Raymond Cagle the former pastor at Union. Brother Cagle has been and is stable influence in the Atlanta area. I thank my God for his ministry. He is a treasured friend. The meeting was well attended by both membership of Union and other churches especially Bethany. I spent the night with my daughter Cindy. Most of the ministry and churches have her CD’s and play them during their gathering time. Brother Briva enjoyed singing with Cindy and the others joined in.

We arose early the next morning for our long ride to Mattoon, Illinois, Zoar Church served by Elder Eugene Janes. On our way thru Kentucky we stop near Paducah to have lunch with Sam and Janice Fooks who are members of Mt. Moriah Church. We had a most enjoyable lunch and fellowship. We met Brother Janes as we entered the city of Mattoon and he led us out to the church. A large gathering was there and dinner was already prepared. There are several States represented and the fellowship was rich. Brother Janes publicly welcomed us and introduced the preaching service. The messages were well received. It was a time of tearful joy and great rejoicing. We returned to the dining room to continue fellowship and share the gladness over the spread of the gospel.

In the morning we drove to Cincinnati and arrived at the church in mid-afternoon. Elder Bradley baptized me, preached my ordination charge and is a proven friend thru the years. His radio and public preaching ministry has been of extreme profit to Primitive Baptist. I have many times invited him to the Philippines. He answered with humor. I will come as soon as they build a bridge from Los Angeles to Manila. I asked him again and he seemed more favorable but we have not as yet set a time. Elder Bradley was kind to the Filipino men. We had services both Saturday night and Sunday morning with a large crowd at both gatherings. We preached two Filipino ministers and each occasion which gave these men more time to develop their subjects. Brother Lasserre took some of the preaching and put them together so the radio audience could enjoy their messages. If you desire I am sure they could be obtained from the Baptist Bible Hour. We enjoyed the fellowship of Lasserre and Emily in their home.

After our meeting and lunch we left Cincinnati to arrive at Lexington Church for supper and services. Elder Mike Gowens is the pastor. Brother Mike has been to the Philippines and spoke at the Minister’s Conference with Elder David Pyles. His writings have been of indispensable value to us. All our ministry have almost all his published works. I am thankful for his gift and the continued industry he has exercised in producing sound literature for our people. I had served the church in Lexington 40 years ago and it was a joy to see so many old friends. We enjoyed a good meal and then had a wonderful preaching service. The Filipino men spoke in their order and gave a good expository discourse mixed with their experiences. I followed with a message and it was warmly received. I spent the night with Brother Alan Hisel and His wife Carolyn. They were the first couple that I baptized after joining the Primitive Baptist. We visited way into the night and I rejoice with them that Brother Mike is their pastor and for the good health of Lexington Church.

We had to awaken early for our drive to Pulaski, Virginia. Pulaski Church is served by Elder Jay Harris. Elder Harris has been a stable and peace loving influence in the area. I rejoice that I had a part of his ordination many years ago. We went immediately to his home. Reba, Brother Jay’s wife, had prepared a sumptuous meal. Brother Jay was a warm host and Reba immediately asked if we needed to wash our clothes. She help us accomplish this task and then prepared for meeting. We arrived at the church building as the crowd was coming in. The building was filled. I was glad to see Elder Novel and Thomas Mann who had visited us in the Philippines. I cannot remember ever having been at Pulaski when the Lord did not bless in the preaching. This was no exception. The messages were well delivered and warmly received. We had a restful evening in Brother Harris home.

On Tuesday morning we drove to Bel Air, Maryland to be with Mt. Carmel Church served by Elder Steven Bloyd. Brother Bloyd is from Lubbock, Texas and I was please to be in his ordination. The Lord has abundantly blessed his ministry in Bel Air. He is an able young, gift and excellent pastor. We met at the church building. He had with him Elder James Compton a 99 year young minister and dear personal friend. I arranged the meeting with Mt. Carmel and the next day at Columbia Church, just north of Washington, D.C. so the Filipinos could visit the old churches in the area as well as visit these two churches. They are very historical minded and desired to see the churches where in the history of the Baptist was brought to America. We had supper at church which was delicious. A good mixture of both old and young gathered that night for service. The song service was especially good. The messages were well received and it proved to be a good season of rejoicing. We remained the evening at the home of Brother Steven. We met early for breakfast with Elder Tim dela Paz the pastor of Columbia Church and begun our visit to many of the old churches in the area. Brother Tim and his wife Aurora came from the Philippines and had come to the church independent of our work in the Philippines. He united a few years back at Columbia and has since been called and ordained as a gospel minister. They enjoyed our Filipinos and fed them some Filipino food. We visited London Tract, Welch tract and Hopewell, as well as others. Seeing these old buildings and considering their place in our history was very interesting. The Filipino ministry rejoiced in viewing and taking pictures at each location. But seeing only the empty buildings saddened me. I wish they still were filled with souls loving the truth of the gospel and singing the song of Zion. Elder Compton remained with us during the entire day and for the services that night. I was filled with appreciation as I watch him measure the pulpit of one of the old churches. He had already made the spindles for the railing and desired to return and put in up in the coming week. To see his industry at his age is amazing. Then we drove to Columbia Church for service that night. It was good to see Elders Steve Aquino and Ed Kirkpatrick. I enjoyed meeting Steve’s wife Janice and enjoying the fellowship of Brother Ed again. After a good meal and fellowship we had the preaching service. The Lord blessed our time of speaking and the messages were well receive. Brother Kirkpatrick and I then went to the home of Bob Cottle and his wife Elizabeth, a deacon of the church and enjoyed a good rest.

On Thursday morning we drove to Angier, North Columbia to be with Angier Church served by Elder Devon Harris. We drove to the home of John and Cassie Bradford, who is a good deacon of the church for supper and fellowship. Brother Harris was renovating his home and was unable to entertain us in his residence. We had a good meeting at the church. It was good to be with the Lawrence family who are members of that church. It was also my joy to be with Karrel and April Watts, the son of Elder EB Watts who have been our close friends for 40 years. I enjoyed spending the night in their home. We had a good meeting in their church with all the ministers speaking with good liberty. After the service we enjoyed visiting with a young couple, Johnnie and Lyn Paddock who had written us in the Philippines. They had a similar love for children and had adopted several children. Their compassion for hurting children was refreshing. Brother Harris informed us they joined last Sunday, May 9.

On the Friday morning of April 16, we drove to Red Top Mountain to be with the North Georgia Fellowship Meeting. There were over a dozen ministers present and the fellowship was rich. Several of the ministers had been to the Philippines and especially Don Farris and James Pruitt had labored with all our visiting ministers. The Filipino ministers enjoyed being with them. Elder Royce Beal, whose daughter lives in Manila and works for the U.S. Embassy also enjoy visiting with all the men from Manila. The organizers of the meeting gave all the preaching time of for the evening service to us who came from the Philippines. From all evidences every one there greatly enjoyed the meeting.

In the morning we drove through the picturesque mountains of Georgia and Alabama to attend Union Church in Woodville, Alabama. Elders Gene Thomas and Darrell Chambers were there to meet us. The crowd was a little small because of some conflicts but the meeting was wonderful. Brother Gene and Darrel have been a strong source of encouragement to our work in the Philippines. Our Filipino ministers spoke with knowledge and convictions and I followed their efforts with encouragements. We left there after lunch to attend Flint Church in Huntsville, Alabama served by Elder Mike Stewart. We first had supper and then assembled for preaching. The Filipino ministers spoke first and I followed outlining things that were essential and non-essential. The preaching was well received. We spent the evening with Mike and Peggy Stewart.

We arose early on Sunday, April 18 to get to Nashville for services of Radnor Church served by Elder Shannon Whip. It was the Annual Meeting at Radnor with David Montgomery being their guest speaker. It was good to see both Shannon and David. I did enjoy my time with both of them. They arranged for me and the Filipino brethren to speak at the morning service and for David to close out the meeting that afternoon. Radnor Church has been very supportive of our Philippine work and the audience was very attentive to our rather lengthy preaching service. I concluded the morning meeting. We enjoined a time of fellowship over lunch. We were soon on the road again heading toward Memphis for a service at Grace Chapel where Elder Zack Guess is the pastor. He had gone to India to work with the churches there. His son Elder Isaac Guess was their moderator for the evening service. Grace Chapel is a spiritual church and is attentive to good preaching. The fellowship was encouraging. All those present enjoyed the preaching. We spent the night in the Guess home. His wife Judy and their many children were extremely hospitable.

The next two appointments were only a few hours apart which gave us time catch our breath. Monday night was at Ripley Church served by Elder Mike Strevel. We arrived early enough to rest a little, wash our clothes and collect our thoughts for preaching. Mike and Kathy were gracious to let us do what ever we needed to do and help us do it. It was a time of refreshment. We enjoyed a special time in the preaching service. The church was warm, receptive, and well attended. The next day, we went to Oxford Church served by Elder Max Ewing. There were a large number of ministers present and I was glad to renew their fellowship. I was especially glad to visit with Elder Larry Wise the pastor of Bethany Church in Ecru, Mississippi and Elder Grady Camp the pastor of Raleigh Church in the Memphis area. The preaching service was very responsive and very receptive. I also enjoyed a length time of fellowship with their pastor Brother Max. I did miss the presence of Brother Stanley Wise and Brother Toy Wise. Toy past away right after my last visit to their country and Brother Stanley was sick.

The next morning we drove to Jackson, Mississippi for services with Jackson Church served by Elder David Pyles. Brother Pyles has visited the Philippines with Elder Mike Gowens. He and Mike did us a wonderful job of preaching. Also upon returning he wrote up a good description of our work. We met David at the church building along with a deacon and an old friend, Brother Joe McPhale. We enjoyed good fellowship and went to a cafeteria for supper. The Filipino ministry asked several good questions to David and I enjoyed the discussion. The large building was almost full and our Lord blessed our meeting. My grand daughter Amber was present which was a delightful surprise. She and her new husband had driven up to meet with us. Brother McPhale took the Filipinos with him and I went home with Brother David. I enjoyed a restful night of needed sleep.

On Thursday morning April 22, we drove to Texas to meet with Tyler Church served by Elder Vernis Stanaland. Brother Vernis is one of my favorite people and to see him and his wife Iris as well as the girls was a treat to me. We drove immediately to their home. They were waiting to receive us. After a short visit and introducing them to my four Elders from the Philippines, we went for supper and then to church. Upon entering the church I saw Brother Anderson and his wife. He is a Missionary Baptist minister and teacher as well. He has supported our work in the Philippines every month since I have been here and is a lover of the doctrines of Grace. It was good to renew his fellowship. Each of our men were a little lengthy with the exception of Brother Dominador but it was still a good meeting. We retired to the Stanaland’s home to have fellowship around a bowl of Blue Bell homemade vanilla ice cream. This is a Stanaland tradition and most enjoyable.

On Friday morning we drove to Austin to attend services at Oak Hill Church served by Elder Dickie Halbgewachs. We went first to Dickie and Charlotte’s home, then to the church for supper and services. The Anderson’s, Charlotte’s parents have moved down the street from them coming from Nebraska. We picked them up on our way to church. Dickie has had a good and prosperous pastorate at Oak hill. There were many new faces. It was good to see the Kyle’s and the Lowrance’s and my many good friends through the years. We enjoyed a good meal as well as good fellowship. After an excellent song service begun by Brother Sonny Lowrance, they turn the service over to me to direct. I used each Filipino men in the same order we had been accustomed to and they all did well. I spoke last and the preaching was well received. We retired for the evening at Brother Dickie’s home with two of the men going to Brother Andersons for the night.

On Friday morning Brother Mark Huffman, Elder Dickie son-in-law offered to drive us to our next three appointments. This was a great blessing. I wanted the time to get to know Mark better who is young excising gift, I did not know my way to the next two destinations and I needed some rest. Thank you Lord and thank you Mark. We drove to Belton, Texas to Belton Church served by Elder Lowell Miles. They had with regularity helped us in the Filipino work and received our coming with warmth and kindness. We enjoyed a good preaching service. The church had several visitors. The interest in the work was good. We stayed for both lunch and fellowship afterwards. We left a little early to make our next appointment at Brentwood Hills served by Elder Sammy Box. Upon arriving at the church I was glad to see Elders Billy Lawrence and Mike Ivey. Because we were a little late we went right into services. In spite of being a little tired from our service of meetings the Lord blessed in the preaching service and the messages were well received. Brother Box spoke approvingly regarding both our work and preaching. We then broke for supper. Brother Briva and Lopez then with great interest spoke to Brother Mike regarding the history of our people. They had all read his book on tracing our history through the Welch Baptist. After a good meal and better fellowship we loaded the truck to go to Lubbock and the home of Elder George Johnson. It was close to midnight when we arrived at Brother George’s home. I had called ahead and asked if he preferred us to stay at a hotel and come next morning, but he was emphatic to come on that night.

Upon arriving at his home his wife Jamie his brother-in-law Elder Jim Jackson as well as George were waiting up for us. We talked and shared into the wee hours of the morning. Mark and my Filipino brethren immediately retired for the night. We finally determined we could not solve all our problems that night and went to bed. Brother Johnson had to go to the hospital at 6 or 7 in the morning for treatment on Brother Jackson’s grandson. When it comes to serving a church and a loving pastor Brother Johnson is as faithful as any minister in Texas. I love this man and rejoice with Lubbock Church over having such a faithful pastor. We arrived at the church early and were glad to see their new building. I had been regularly visiting this church every year for almost 20 years. I was glad to see so many new faces in the congregation. The large building was pleasantly filled and the preaching was excellent. Elder Briva with his customary manner chose a text from Psalm 119 and gave a clear expository explanation of its teaching. Elder Lozada gave first his experience of his conversion and outlined his belief on election. Brother Lopez spoke with charisma and gave three points from the Great Commission in Matthew 28. Brother Quinto with clarity and good sentence structure preach from I Thessalonians. I concluded with a message from Acts 15 sharing the excitement over the reception of the Gentiles. I then compared their reception to the coming of the Filipino people and our joy. The messages were well received. We then enjoyed a good lunch and then were back on the road again.

We drove to Stephenville, Texas to meet with Shiloh Church served by Elder Dwayne Shaffer. We arrived at his home to a welcoming crowd from different churches. Before meeting we had an excellent meal of great variety. They have a building presently under construction but are currently meeting in a large library in Brother Shaffer’s home. We filled every available space with some 80 or 90 people. The young people even filled the balcony. Several ministers were present and the atmospheres were warm and pleasant. Brother Shaffer has had extensive illness for several months, but was having a better day on that Sunday night. Brother Shaffer has been to the Philippines and one of my favorite experiences was traveling with him and Elder HD Fulmer for a day in the back of a jeepney. Brother Shaffer introduced the meeting and turned the service over to me. We again handled the service in the same manner as before to the joy of the congregation. The membership of the church has been very helpful to our work and especially the orphanage or children’s home. We then went up the home of Brother Andy Hanson a member the church at Shiloh. He is being exercised in preaching and has visited us in the Philippines. We rested well in the spacious ranch home and enjoyed a sumptuous breakfast in the morning. Brother Andy and his wife were an excellent host. Brother Hansen has also been generous to our work.

We left for Oklahoma City to visit Bethlehem Church served by Elder Bill McCarthy. We arrived at Bill’s home where he was waiting for our arrival. We dressed and headed for supper and service at Bethlehem Church. It was good to see Randy, Brother Bill’s son and Elder Allen Daniels. These are two excellent ministers and my close friends. We enjoyed good fellowship with the members during a good meal. The messages were clearly delivered and the services were enjoyed by the congregation. We spent the night in the home of Bill and Sue and they were gracious host. The next morning we had breakfast enjoying the company of several of the members including three families that had come from Cozad, Nebraska, Howard Halbgewachs, Jim Underwood, and Elder Tommy Bond and Elaine. After breakfast we drove to Scranton, Arkansas; Friendship church served by Elder HD Fulmer. Elder Fulmer was a great benefit in the labor of converting three of the ministers while he was in the Philippines. Friendship Church is the congregation that extended an arm to constitute the congregation served Elder Briva and Elder Lopez. Upon arriving at the Church they had put a banner welcoming the Philippine ministry. The church was overjoyed to have these ministers visit them. We enjoyed good fellowship and updating Brother Fulmer as to progress of the work in the Philippines. Other ministers began to arrived, Elder Jimmy Fulmer from Atlanta, Roland Green from Arkansas, Zack Guess from Tennessee and Jessie Doyle from Oklahoma. We enjoyed a good meal together. We had a short song service. Then in tears, Brother Fulmer introduced the Filipino ministers and gave experiences he had with each of them. It was a special time in our visitation of churches. Each ministers spoke sharing some of their testimony of coming to our people as well as dealing with a scriptural subject. I concluded the meeting with a short discourse. We spent the night in Brother Harvey’s home and appreciate the care given to us by Sister Ruby. In the morning we met with several members of the church for breakfast in the church dinning room.

We loaded our truck and went to Donaldson, Arkansas for a visit with Elder Charles Sandage and his wife Virgie. They had both been a father and mother to me in years gone by. I enjoyed a delicious meal and warm fellowship. We then met Elder Sonny Phelan the pastor of Harmony Church at the church building. Sonny is an excellent pastor and the Lord has blessed his ministry at Harmony. It was good to see the Newman’s and Clayton’s who have been my friends through the years. Our ministers divided up going to different homes. I stayed with Brother Sonny and we enjoyed good fellowship. Marilyn was a gracious host. On our way out in the morning Sonny took us by his pharmacy and gave our Filipinos some vitamins for themselves and their families.

We left for Birmingham, Alabama, Vestavia Church served by Elder Sam Bryant. Brother Sam has just accepted the pastorship of Vestavia. He is an able minister and in my estimation he will do well there. It will be a good marriage for both of them. Brother Bryant though he has moved to Birmingham was unable to be at the service because of the birth of his first grandchild. My friend Elder Guy Hunt came down to be with us and served as moderator of the meeting. It was a good meeting with each man dealing with different Bible subjects. After the meeting we went into the dining hall for refreshments and good fellowship. Brother Mark Stevenson formerly at Bethany Church in Atlanta married Beth Blair from Vestavia desired us to go home with them. But knowing the many things I had to do in Atlanta we needed to drive to Atlanta that night. It was almost 3:00 A.M. when we finally arrived at a motel 30 minutes from Atlanta, I could go no further. While in Birmingham, I also visited with my Brother Fritz Harter. We had supper with him and Elder Guy and Helen Hunt.

Friday morning, Brother Don Farris desiring fellowship with my four tired companions picked them up at the motel. I left for Atlanta attempting to accomplish some last minute shopping for my wife, some pressing business details and the cleaning of the dodge truck to return to a gracious Bobby Garner. I then went to spend the rest of my time with my children. My oldest daughter Tammy married to Elder Lonnie Mozingo had just moved into a beautiful home in Roswell. Becky and Stephanie were there helping them move in. We then went out for supper at a fine Japanese restaurant meeting Marty and Cindy at the restaurant. The food was good but being with my children was my delight. I missed my children and just to be with them brought tears to my eyes. They all went with me to Stephanie’s home and helped me pack for my return home. It was past midnight when I finally completed my task.

As usual I came up with the sun. Marty brought my four brethren from Brother Farris. Lonnie then took us to the airport to fly to Los Angeles. Brother Joe Holder met us at the airport for we had two more appointments before going back to the Philippines. He arrived with Brother Johnson with two cars to carry out luggage to the church at Bel Flower. We had services in the afternoon preaching Elder Dominador and Lopez and they then went to be with the church at Santa Paula with their pastor Elder Charles Clark. Elder Briva and Quinto remained with us to have service at Bel Flower on Sunday. We spent the night at Brother Holder’s home. Sandra with kindness was a marvelous host. We enjoyed sitting out on their patio over looking the lights of the city. It was a restful evening and much needed. On Sunday we went to services at Little Zion. I was glad to renew my fellowship with these good brethren. The preaching was instructive, I was glad I had brought the ministers to America. They were a good representative of the Filipino churches. They had express clarity in doctrine, a passion for our Sovereign Lord and zeal in spreading the truth of the gospel of grace. Brother Doming and Ronaldo arrived as the last minister spoke. After a short time of visitation we loaded the cars for final leg of our journey. Brother Joe Holder is proven a friend to our work as well as to me personally. Thank you, thank you.

Upon waiting to board our plane from Los Angeles to Manila, I asked our four Filipino Ministers. What was their fondest memory of their trip to America? Without hesitation, they responded the kindness, warmth and sweetness of the hospitality and fellowship extended to them by American Primitive Baptist. These men had preached well and never complained about the exhausting travel or the distant between appointments. With a degree of satisfaction of visiting so many churches and my renewed fellowship with so many fine ministers and friends, I turned my thoughts to my wife and family back in the Philippines. I longed for their embrace and love. I soon was in a much needed sleep for eight hours. I awoke only a few hours from my adopted home. Please pray for our safety and success in carrying the gospel to the Philippines.

G. H.
Photos Visit to America