The baptisms simultaneously conducted on May 14, 2023 by the Ecclesiastical District of Negros Oriental, in the Philippines, brought joy and hope to the new converts as they have become full-fledged members of the Iglesia Ni Cristo (Church Of Christ).
“In my previous religion, I was not satisfied with the teachings we were taught, which is why we stopped attending there,” said newly baptized Annel Arcalin from Dumaguete City, who joined the Iglesia Ni Cristo together with his family.
“Fortunately, my friend invited me to attend Bible studies on doctrines conducted in the Church Of Christ. There I clearly understood God’s teachings, primarily that the Father, the Creator, is the only true God,” he added.
The baptismal gatherings were held in two separate venues—the houses of worship of the local congregations of Dumaguete City and Bayawan. Brother Renato Callejo, district supervising minister, officiated at the former; Brother James Jasper Villanueva, assistant district supervising minister, at the latter.
The officiating ministers emphasized the importance of receiving true baptism, and remaining steadfast in the divine election by “remaining obedient to all of God’s commandments” which “greatly help in keeping us from the sinful lusts and vices of this world,” Brother Callejo explained.
After the preaching of God’s words, the candidates for baptism first took their oath of membership before their immersion in water.
“I joined the Church Of Christ because herein I learned God’s pristine teachings. I understood that eating food mixed with blood is abominable before His sight, as well as worshiping idols, and the sign of the cross, among others,” said Manilyn, Annel’s wife. “Our family is very grateful because we’re now members of the Church Of Christ. We now have the right to salvation,” she added. — With reports from Jonathan Rempillo of INC News Section