From the monthly archives:

January 2006

Update of theWork

by Original Author on January 4, 2006

Originally posted by Elder Gus Harter

As the year 2005 comes to close, it is difficult for me to realize that we have been in the Philippines for five years. It has been an amazing journey. We have seen over one hundred congregations planted, over one hundred ministers raised up to serve them and several thousand souls baptized. Through the efforts of Beauty for Ashes staff and the grace of God we have witness the saving of the life of over 200 little babies and care given to hundreds of children. Presently we are enjoying the care of about 50 children in our home and the children’s home. There seems to be no end to this opportunity of service. May our Lord be praised and may we appreciate His sustaining grace toward us.

Thank you for your kind and generous assistance in this labor. I know many have sacrificed to aid this work. Please know that it is both appreciated and needed. Enclosed is the latest issue of the Gospel Herald. For your continued help, interest and prayers thank you.

To update you on my present health, though we do not have conclusive results, what news we have is good. Upon the latest CAT scan in December, the tumor is continuing to decrease. The Oncologist (Cancer Physicians) do not think I have cancer. They have put me on several antibiotics and sent me home again. I was told to come back in two or three months and we will do another scan to see if we are solving the problem. Your prayers are greatly appreciated. The Lord has blessed us abundantly thru these difficult days. Although I look upon death as friend that will one day bring me in to the presence of my Lord. My concern is for my wife and family and the work that I was leaving behind. Our lord has graciously extended this labor. Please continue to pray for us.

New Hope Church in Winter Garden, Florida will host the Florida Fellowship Meeting the last weekend in February. This will coincide with completion of their new building. I plan to come home for this joyous occasion. Winter Garden is my hometown and I served New Hope for several years. While serving them we organized the First Florida Fellowship meeting in November of 1968. That first meeting was one of the highlights of my ministerial life. I look forward to renewing my fellowship with the good brethren in Florida. I plan on visiting many areas before returning to the Philippines. I will conclude my visit by attending the Annual Meeting of Bethany Church in Atlanta on the first weekend of April.

We have planted most of the property in various popular fruits and vegetables. We are working the land mainly with a few hand tools and are anxiously awaiting the shipment from America. Today we are making plans to build pens for pigs, goats and rabbits. There is used here a Korean method in raising pigs which uses different ingredients in the soil. It eliminates the bad odor and lessens the number of flies. As most of you know I am complete novice at this farming but I am both listening and learning. I do desire to teach my boys how to work and live off the land. I am as anxious to teach a strong work of ethic as teaching good morality. It is a necessary ingredient to making it in this world and it is Christian. “If any would not work, neither should he eat” II Thessalonians 3:10. We have not begun building on the property but hope to begin after returning from America.

Progress among our churches is good. In several areas the Lord is raising up new ministers. In Manila alone under the pastorship of Elder Conrado Quinto and the help of Elder Manny Briva there are ten new exercising brethren whom they are being trained according to II Timothy 2 in the Biblical apprenticeship fashion. Using the Bible as the textbook and aided by good articles from the best Primitive Baptist authors they are developing a consistent doctrinal foundation. By the providence of God, one of our able ministers, Elder Windel Lampad from Surigao del Sur in Mindanao received a telephone call from a complete stranger from Manila. Elder Lampad at the request of the caller shared his knowledge of salvation by grace. The caller who was a medical doctor was so impressed with the message of grace; he invited Brother Lampad to share it with several other Physicians in Manila. Upon several visits to Manila all three Doctors requested Brother Wendell to start a church in midst of their medical compound. In the same area, Quezon City, three families from the congregation of Brother Lampad in Mindanao had relocated and two of his sisters with their families also live in the same area. Brother Lampad serves a wonderful church with over 100 members but is considering moving to Manila to establish a work there. Please pray for him. Elder Roly Nemeño, Sr. from Zamboanga del Sur has this December 22 baptized a minister with thirteen of his congregation. We continue to receive good news of baptism and new outreaches on a weekly basis. May our Lord be praised.

I look forward to visiting with you soon in America.

Your Servant in Christ,