Thursday, September 1, 2011

Boxing Tryouts @ Gil Montilla National High School!

Pastor Sam...all smiles at getting the Boxing Ministry started at GMNHS
Weighing in the boxers.

Pastor Sam giving the boxers instructions.

One of our ABBA Boys, Wilfredo helping a boxer gear up.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

The Montejo Brothers

Melcho (30), Zehlim (26), Pastor Sam (28)

We took this photo of the 3 Montejo brothers before they headed up north to the LTO Office (Land & Transportation Office) to  register our Tricycle (motorcycle with side car) and Melcho and Zehlim to get their student licenses. Pastor Sam was licensed awhile back, but as the mission needs grow and expand we would like to have more licensed drivers. They were so excited to head off and get their licenses, as it is a rare priviledge to get a driving license.

These three brothers have been a real blessing to us. Pastor Sam has been our "main man" since our arrival. He has helped us accomplish so much, in such a short time. He has helped us with everything from buying land to buying chickens and his translating expertise has been invaluable. His integrity and love for God have made him a blessing to serve with. He is our Filipino son!

Melcho is the oldest brother and we call him a "machine" or maybe a better way to describe him would be to call him the "energizer bunny". Whether he is clearing land, making charcoal or whatever we hire him to do, he does it with energy to spare. He is married to Jurinda, who keeps my house spic and span and they have three children. Daisey Mae (8), Hannah (5) and Mark (5 months).

Zehlim is another hard working brother. He married his child hood sweetheart Michelle this February and they are expecting their first child at the beginning of the year. Zehlim has worked with Richard on every construction project and has  become one of the lead workers. He  quickly grasps Richards' building designs and has been a real help in getting the other Filipino workers to understand what Daddy Rich wants!

We are currently living in Pastor Sam's house on the Montejo land while we wait to build our own house down the road on the land we purchased. We appreciate all the brothers support of ABBA Mission and it's endeavours.  People of integrity are the greatest assets one can have in a foreign land. We are grateful to God for each one of them, they are family. They have been a blessing to us and we pray that we are a blessing to them as well.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Kitchen Boquet......

"Who gives food to all flesh, for His lovingkindness is everlasting." Psalm 126:25

Amaizngly, these are mushrooms not flowers!

Our neighbor brought these mushrooms to us yesterday. I was awed at their beauty, not to mention their taste! I just love seeing how creative my God is in the everyday things, and so thankful for His continual provision of our daily food.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Happy 23rd Birthday to our son Calvin......

Calvin @ 3 years old, 1991.
Can it be that 23 years ago our third son Calvin was born? Time seems to fly by so fast and at other times it seems to drag so slowly. Like waiting for him to be born! He was about 8 days overdue and waiting for him to make his way into this world seemed to take forever. He was the first son I had at home and just when I thought it wasn't going to ever happen he 10 lbs., with a 14" head, it was no wonder he took so long! Calvin was such a sweet child, by far the calmest of the three. We had almost 5 years between Daren and him, so I really enjoyed being a mother again.

Time seemed to stand still on several occasions later in his life. In 2004 he had his appendix burst while visiting his grandparents in Burbank, Ca. He spent 8 days in the hospital only to fly home to Portland and be back in the hospital another 5 days with severe infection. During those days he was in the hospital his best friend Sam Visan, was in an automobile accident and was admitted to the same hospital. Calvin recovered after awhile, but his dear friend Sam went home to be with his Saviour leaving a huge hole in all our lives. Calvin joined the Oregon National Guard in 2008 and spent a year in Iraq in 2009. Just days before heading off to Iraq, Calvin's son Aaron was born and spent the first weeks of his life in NICU. Yes, those are the times that life seems to go so slow and yet it is during those times we readjust our priorities and we praise God that there is an eternity to be reunited with loved ones.

And now with 8,000 miles between us, it is impossible for us to celebrate together, but again we commit you to the hands of a loving Father this new year of your life. So happy birthday Calvin.....we are so glad the Lord loaned you to us and has preserved your life thus far. Happy 23rd!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

SMCI comes to Gil Montilla National High School!

Today the SMCI (Student Ministry for Christ Internation) team covering Negros Occidental came through Landon's High school. They are a team of Evangelists that cover thousands of high school and college classrooms for 30 minutes to give the gospel to as many students as possible. This is an annual event on several of the Philippine Islands in the Western Visayas Region. Thousands of students accept Christ every year. It is an amazing thing to observe, and we were blessed to help out at Gil Montilla National High School!
Be sure to follow their blog at:

Rich helped out in one of the classrooms.....more students then the Evangelists could keep up with!

Good Bye....and God bless....until next year!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

"You have made the land quake,You have split it open." Psalm 60:2

On the morning of July 12th @ 4:45 a.m. we were woken up by a strong earthquake in our hotel room in Bacolod. We later found out that it was a 6.2 centered out of Cauyuan which isn't far from our home in Sipalay. Since the 12th the after shocks have been continuous albeit mild, many of them based out of Sipalay City. Many of the people who live in town right next to the ocean are very fearful of a tsunami. This situation has given us the ability to have meaningful conversations about the Lord with various people.

 This is a great link to earthquakes in the Philippines.

18 July 2011 - 11:25 PM        09.30      122.19       015           4.3        081 km S 15° E of Sipalay City (Negros
18 July 2011 - 05:02 PM        09.61      124.53       001           2.5        017 km S 15° E of Guindulman (Bohol)
18 July 2011 - 03:10 PM        09.64      124.58       030           1.7        017 km S 36° E of Guindulman (Bohol)
18 July 2011 - 08:43 AM        09.32      122.25       030           3.8        081 km S 20° E of Sipalay City (Negros
15 July 2011 - 02:49 AM        09.70      122.47       015           4.6        062 km S 57° E of Sipalay City (Negros
14 July 2011 - 07:19 AM        09.66      122.16       001           3.9        042 km S 25° E of Sipalay City (Negros
14 July 2011 - 12:36 AM        13.67      124.73       112           4.7        040 km N 88° E of Baras (Catanduanes)
13 July 2011 - 07:04 PM        10.11      125.67       018           2.7        019 km N 29° E of Dinagat (Dinagat Island)
13 July 2011 - 10:30 AM        09.36      122.14       017           3.7        073 km S 12° E of Sipalay (Negros Occidental)
12 July 2011 - 04:56 PM        09.60      122.16       015           4.9        066 km S 51° W of Cauayan (Negros Occidental)12 July 2011 - 11:52 AM        09.54      121.98       108           2.7        051 km S 02° W of Sipalay City (Negros
12 July 2011 - 11:46 AM        09.59      122.32       144           3.5        053 km S 38° W of Cauayan (Negros Occidental)12 July 2011 - 10:28 AM       09.62      121.86       051           3.4        045 km S 20° W of Sipalay City (Negros
12 July 2011 - 10:04 AM       09.61      122.03       021           3.5        044 km S 04° E of Sipalay City (Negros Occidental)12 July 2011 - 09:44 AM        10.01      122.22       060           3.1        024 km N 86° E of Sipalay City (Negros
12 July 2011 - 09:35 AM       09.67      121.83       104           3.5        041 km S 26° W of Sipalay City (Negros

12 July 2011 - 09:14 AM       09.49      121.68       015           3.9        067 km S 32° W of Sipalay City (Negros
12 July 2011 - 09:00 AM       09.63      121.97       015           3.0        081 km S 62° W of Cauayan (Negros Occidental)

12 July 2011 - 08:49 AM       09.59      121.99       085           3.2        082 km S 59° W of Cauayan (Negros Occidental)
12 July 2011 - 07:29 AM        09.50      121.98       040           3.3        056 km S 02° W of Sipalay City (Negros
12 July 2011 - 07:10 AM        09.44      121.94       092           4.7        063 km S 06° W of Sipalay City (Negros
12 July 2011 - 07:05 AM        09.49      122.03       022           3.4        085 km S 51° W of Cauayan (Negros Occidental)12 July 2011 - 06:50 AM        09.56      122.04       029           3.8        079 km S 55° W of Cauayan (Negros Occidental)12 July 2011 - 05:05 AM        09.33      122.58       206           5.5        078 km N 88° W of Dumaguete City

12 July 2011 - 05:03 AM        09.81      122.06       101           5.7        065 km S 74° W of Cauayan (Negros Occidental) 12 July 2011 - 04:47 AM        09.45     122.15        004           6.2        078 km S 42° W of Cauayan (Negros Occidental)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Surgery for Lilia

Lilia & Paterno of Sipalay

Lilia is an Aunt of Pastor Sam's who has been afflicted with a large goiter for over 16 years. She has basically remained a shut in for most of this time. The Lord placed a burden on our hearts to see how we could assist her with this condition. Through various circumstances we have been able to navigate our way though the government health care system and get her started on some treatment to help her with this condition. This is our second trip up to Bacolod to see if she is ready for surgery or not. Please be praying with us that her lab tests show she is ready for this surgery that will bring her a brand new life! I don't think I've ever received a tighter hug then from her, in my entire lifetime......sometimes you understand a person without even being able to speak their language.

"Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ." Galatians 6:2

Friday, May 27, 2011

Do you have Beautiful Feet?

" How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, who publishes peace, who brings good news of happiness, who publishes salvation, who says to Zion, "Your God reigns." Isaiah 52:7
After one week of the "rainy" season we are in mud up to our ankles.....

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Yummy.......Americano Breakfast!

Danelo, Landon, Wilfredo, Rene & Toto

Some of the boxing boys stopped by for breakfast this morning.......I had rice, but no fish.....oh what to do? I decided to serve them up some American pancakes. You can see how much they enjoyed was the first time any of them had ever had a pancake or syrup. They especially like my berry syrup from Oregon! They've got great taste, the good thing is they washed the dishes!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Is Osama Bin Laden REALLY dead???

.......or did he and his sidekick escape over here to the PI? This is  very common headgear worn around this part of the Philippines. The Filipinos love to wear these as they work in the fields or ride around on their rmotorcyles. They mainly wear it to keep the sun off them, but Rich has discovered it keeps the misquitos from attacking his head and neck!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Over the Sunset Mountains.....or should I say oceans?

Heaven awaits for me, Over the sunset mountains, Jesus my Savior I'll see

Last night was by far the most stunning sunset I have seen outside our home.  I did a lot of traveing by bus yesterday as well as standing in line and was able to read through the whole book of Romans. I thought of the verse in Chapter 1:20  "for since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature have been clearly seen, being understood by what has been made, so that they are without excuse."

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Putting old things to good use....

My old sewing machine sat in my closet for a decade. I'm thankful I shipped it over here because Pastor Sam's Uncle Juan and his family are putting it to good use in their Tailor Shop here in Sipalay. They have been very supportive of our Sunday evening church plant at Jamont's downtown.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Welcome to the ABBA Mission Blog......

Welcome to our blog. It is hard to believe that the end of this month will be our 6 month anniversary as missionaries in the Philippines! Where does the time go? So many things have happened since arriving here I thought it was time to start recording the amazng hand of God in our lives and mission endeavours. As "lay" missionaries we have had much to learn, but whether we are on a foreign mission field or doing the task God has assigned us to at "home" the essentials remain the same; be available, walk in the Spirit and obey. May God have all the glory!