North Island New Zealand
First Corinthians 13:13 states, “ So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love". Love, indeed, is the most substantial gift from God to mankind. Through love, we learn to become affectionate, selfless, and forgiving.
The Members Church of God International (MCGI) brethren in the North Island New Zealand were given another opportunity to celebrate love, particularly of the married couples as they held another Couples’ Night on December 08, 2019. This romantic event, which had a theme called “Ngayon at Kailanman” (Now and Forever) was attended by 28 couples and 19 married brethren who are physically apart from their other halves, solemnly shared the evening with memories and lessons in love to cherish.
Carrying out the spirit of this gathering, brother Eli Soriano and brother Daniel Razon shared words from the Bible explaining the sanctity of marriage and the unity of two people bound together by the true essence of love through God’s law, which says in Matthew 19:6 “So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man separate.” A man and a woman bound by the gift of love should, therefore, live together in harmony and faith for as long as the two shall live under the commandment of God as stated in the book of Colossians 3:18-19, which says, “Wives, submit to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord. Husbands, love your wives, and do not be harsh with them,” or otherwise, disobey His will and commit the act of desertion.
The program was followed by a sumptuous dinner and an open dance floor to enjoy. Young and old, gay and free, everyone was invited to join in and show off their dance moves gracefully. Another worthwhile and successful event happened through God’s help and guidance. The MCGI brethren give back all the glory and honor unto HIM.
May the spirit of love always remain in us and be reminded of these words from the book of I Corinthians 13:7-8, “Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away.”
Written by: Sis Amy Chan Caco
Together as one, the members of the Church of God International New Zealand chapter and throughout the globe culminated the 39th anniversary of the television program “Ang Dating Daan” or “The Old Path” by conducting charitable efforts throughout November. These efforts aimed to spread God’s love through the advocacy of our program which is to continue to advocate “Love, Hope and Faith” by catering to the needs of our fellowmen. These were also done following our theme “Upholding the truth through the gospel and good works”.
Through the help and mercy of God, the brethren were able to specially cater to the needs of the elderly through the “Eldercare” effort. This activity is aimed at spreading love and joy to the senior citizens through means of interacting with them by singing, dancing and playing games. The elderly were pleased by the efforts of the members as they can be seen reminiscing about the days of their youth. Caring for our fellowmen is just one of the many things our preachers continually remind us to do. In 1 Timothy 5:1: “Rebuke not an elder, but entreat him as a father; and the younger men as brethren;” Thus, we were able to continue to spread “Love, Hope, and Faith” through this charitable work.
In conjunction with the said “Eldercare” effort, The Members Church of God throughout the Locale Chapters in New Zealand held yet another series of Blood Donation Drives to give blood to those in need of it. This effort was done in different locations spread throughout the different parts of New Zealand wherein our Locale Chapters are located. This God-given opportunity was grabbed by members throughout New Zealand and was fruitful. Through this opportunity, members were once again able to show love, compassion, and care by participating and becoming donors for this said effort.
Finally, the Members Church of God from all parts of New Zealand and throughout the globe joined together to celebrate the “Fiesta Ng Dios” or “Feast Dedicated to God” event. This was held on the 24th of November and was put into place to continue to advocate Love, Hope and instill Faith into the members as well as the guests. Guests were treated with bountiful meals, teachings from our preachers and fun-filled games. The Members Church of God welcomed all guests and prioritized them in this event. We were able to provide free food, a free store, and free health care services with the help and mercy of God. As the Bible says in Luke 14:13 “But when thou makest a feast, call the poor, the maimed, the lame, the blind:”.
Through these efforts, we were able to continue to do good for our fellowmen. To be zealous in good works is continually being reminded to us to do by our preachers. In Galatians 6:10 “As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.” and Hebrews 13:16: “But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.” By conducting these charitable events and activities, we were able to uphold the truth through the gospel and through our good works.
As an added effort, different chapters from New Zealand shown their video greetings in celebration of the 39th year since “The Old Path” programs founding.
To God be the glory!
Written by: Brother Mel Quitaleg
North Island New Zealand
The Members Church of God International (MCGI) in New Zealand have once again held its get together activity where brethren from all throughout the North Island region flocked as one to participate, experience, learn and strengthen both their spirits and bodies as they continue to strive for holiness through the gospel and good works. The team building event was held on the 28th of October (Labour Day) at the Howick Leisure Centre in Auckland where a total of 160 attendees were present to experience and participate in the event.
Gathering together as one is part of what Christians do. In this day and age where most people gather for their own personal interests and not for the Lord's, brethren from North Island were given an opportunity to hold the unprecedented team building and sports fest event strengthening both their spirit and body as they exercised and listened to the word of God. As it is written in I Timothy 4:8 (KJV), “For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come." Bodily exercise is beneficial, but practicing Godliness through good works is profitable in this life and in the life which is to come. Doing bodily exercise and Godliness at the same time is indeed beneficial!
The event kicked off with brethren conditioning their bodies for the day. Psalms and hymns for the Lord were sung not only to unify the brethren but to guide the day that was ahead of them. The congregational singing was followed by a short prayer led by the church workers. Afterward, the workers gave their opening remarks to welcome the brethren and guests. After that, the brethren were asked by the organizers to gather around and were grouped into four - each given instructions to do as what they were instructed. This marked the beginning of the team building event.
The KNC’s or the Kawan ng Cordero’s (Flock of Lambs) were given games and activities as their part of the said event. In their activities, the children of the brethren showed that even with how little and fragile one maybe, with God’s help, they can cooperate and unite to achieve a common goal.
Meanwhile, in the main hall, the brethren showed their willpower in every way possible to complete the tasks. Through teamwork, each team was able to lift their team members one by one using merely strings with which they ran to and fro, back and forth, and successfully completing the task given to them. This shows how members of a team can work together to get the job done. Through sheer willpower, strength, and cooperation, no task is impossible to do with God's help.
Brethren also showcased their wit and ingenuity in building a tower made out of scrap papers. Each team used all allowed means possible to build a tower from scratch. This shows that even the faintest idea of how the structure of the tower's going to be, members can collaborate, cooperate and finally, act by carefully putting pieces together to build a tower.
To sum up the culminated team building activities, the brethren listened to the inspirational message and assessment delivered by Brother Daniel Razon. He began by saying “...hindi ito ordinaryong team building.”, “...this is not a ordinary team building.” In his speech, he emphasized the importance of every member especially the weak. He also explained the importance of doing team building activities for brethren to better understand the will of God on working together. He related each activity to actual situations. Nonetheless, all the activities teach the value of teamwork. The brethren learned that working as a team involves caring for the weak because however small or weak they are, they are part of the team.
Intermission numbers were performed as the brethren ate their lunch. Songs from different artists and generations were sung to entertain the brethren. May it be old or modern, music speaks to everyone that hears it. As the day neared its end, the brethren took one last picture to remember this day as they not only exercised their bodies physically but also spiritually in faith. United as one, the brethren parted ways. Even though distance may separate us all, faith brings us closer together.
To God be the Glory!
Written by: Brother John Gabriel Alovera
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