Nearly 300 Seventh-day Adventist leaders across central Philippines heeded the call to reach the cities with the gospel in a training event at Central Philippine Adventist College in Negros Occidental, January 26-28, 2023.
The “Mission to the Cities Trainers’ Training” event sought to emphasize the importance of understanding God’s method, acquiring the necessary tools, and embracing an appropriate attitude to carry out the mission to the cities. The office of Nurture, Discipleship & Reclamation – Integrated Evangelism Lifestyle (NDR-IEL) of the Adventist Church in central Philippines spearheaded the three-day “trainers’ training.”
Speakers included Robin D. Willison, Adventist Mission consultant, and his wife, Zenaida, an international development consultant. Other speakers included Arnel P. Gabin, director for NDR-IEL in the Southern Asia-Pacific Division (SSD), and his wife, Irelyn, SSD associate director for NDR-IEL.
Abner P. Dizon, SSD Interfaith Services director for Muslim & Secular/Postmodern, and Eliezer T. Barlizo Jr., Central Philippine Union Conference president, also shared messages of inspiration and training.
In an interview on the sidelines of the event, Gabin emphasized the importance of equipping pastors and church leaders to mobilize everyone in reaching the people in urban areas in their respective territories. “We are living in the last part of the earth’s history. We need to reach all the people in the cities and the higher strata of our society,” he said. “I hope and pray that this initiative will reach many people this year. It’s time to go and reach the urban areas!”
Barlizo encouraged all the workers, fellow church leaders, and members to be united as they do God’s work. “We should emphasize this thrust to the cities. We should invite all our members to participate because God wants us to help prepare many people for His soon return,” he said.
Lowell L. Quinto, Central Philippine NDR-IEL field secretary and the overall program coordinator, glorified God for His blessings and guidance in making the event successful and for the well-represented delegation of district pastors, directors, and administrators. “May this initiative draw us closer to one another and, most of all, to our Almighty God, that when He comes in the clouds of heaven, all of us will be rewarded and reap the fruit of our labors,” Quinto said.
On Saturday (Sabbath) afternoon, the delegates participated in a group activity to make an action plan on how to carry out the work of the Lord in the cities. A commitment program closed the three-day training, as participants pledged to plead for the Holy Spirit’s guidance and empowerment as they dedicate their lives to reach as many souls as possible.