EVEN THOUGH life is becoming even more difficult, members of the Church Of Christ continue unhindered in their services to the Lord God. They witness and experience firsthand how He remains to be with the entirety of the Church, especially with its Executive Minister, Brother Eduardo V. Manalo.
On February 27, 2021, the Executive Minister officiated at a worship service at the Central Temple in Quezon City, Philippines. It was streamed live to numerous sites around the world. Brother Eduardo Manalo delivered once more timely reminders to the members of the Church and encouraged them to always have faith in God. “If we will firmly believe in God and not doubt Him, the things that are impossible for us will become possible because God will help us,” he emphasized.
The following are inspiring accounts of some of the brethren who attended the said worship service, exhibiting their fortified resolve to place their trust in God and in what He can do for them, as taught by the Executive Minister:
Vallejo, Northeast California, USA
Written by Edwil Antolin
For the members of the Church Of Christ, the successes that the Church reaps one after the other is a clear manifestation of God’s promised help to His work of salvation in these last days, as well as to the individual members.
Sister Elvira Zingapan attests to this based on her experience. She shared, “According to doctors, there was no cure for my disease. My condition would only worsen.” She was diagnosed with multiple myeloma, a type of blood cancer. In spite of this, Sister Elvira remained active in her duty as a finance officer, which she has been performing for 46 years now. Entrusting her condition to God, she said, “Aside from having devotional prayers, I was anointed with oil every Wednesday, every after the worship service.”
The same conviction is held by Sister Aileen Mabilog, also a finance officer. In the early part of 2020, she lost her job of eight years as a caregiver due to issues related to the Covid-19 scare, which was then beginning to spread in the United States. For a time, just like many people, she fell into hard times, but she made sure that she would not be hindered from worshiping the Lord God. She said, “I will never forsake the worship services.”
The actions taken by Sisters Aileen and Elvira in the face of difficulties reflect their faith as true members of the Church Of Christ. True members of the Church always abide by God’s words no matter what they face in life, for they know that in doing so, God will help them overcome even the most impossible situations. As Brother Eduardo Manalo emphasized in his homily during the worship service, nothing will be impossible for God’s people because God will help them. This He will do if they obey Him and do what is pleasing before Him.
Nine months after receiving the dreadful news about her disease, Sister Elvie was informed by her doctors that, defying their expectations, her health was getting better. She happily said, “My hair grew back and I even gained some weight. I knew our prayers were answered. I will continue with my devotional prayers. I know that God will eventually grant me full recovery and give me more years I can use in serving Him.”
Meanwhile, only a few days after Sister Aileen started looking for a new job, she received a phone call from a hospital for an interview. After only two days following the interview, she was offered a position that was better than her previous occupation. Sister Aileen recollects, “It was truly God’s doing. I never had any doubt that His answer would come.”
As the Church Of Christ continues on in all its works, its members have faith that God will keep fulfilling His promises. For this reason, they are also determined to continue serving Him. Even if troubles abound, true members of the Church are not dismayed, for they have faith that with God, nothing is impossible.
Green Condo, Central, Philippines
Written by Lovely Samanion
How hard would it be for a wife aspiring to become a mother to lose the opportunity of bearing a child twice? This was what Sister Odyssa Bell Pagatpatan experienced.
Diagnosed with a certain condition in her reproductive system, Sister Odyssa had to get one of her fallopian tubes removed. She said, “It’s a dream of married couples to have their own child. In our case, I already had a miscarriage once. So losing the chance to have a child the second time was truly painful for me, both physically and emotionally.”
Nonetheless, instead of giving up, Sister Odyssa recalled, “We never lost hope. In fact, we all the more had hope—in God’s help.” She said that another disappointment in her life was not a reason for her to despair because she had experienced so many times in her life how God helped her during the most difficult situations. She recalled, “In 2020, my father, my husband, and I all tested positive for Covid-19. Yet, we were able to overcome that through constant prayers, which God truly heeded.”
Such conviction is upheld by members of the Church Of Christ because they are taught God’s promises, which He fulfills when they remain obedient to Him. “I do not think much about the problems I endure because I have God. I believe all troubles we have will last only for a while. What I do is I always pray to Him and patiently wait for His help,” said Sister Eliza Mangulabnan, a local congregation secretary.
Members of the Church also witness how God fulfills His promises to the entirety of the Church Of Christ, which all the more strengthens their faith in Him. “During this pandemic, many people suffered financially. In spite of that, many people are still being baptized into the Church, new Bible students are added daily, beautiful houses of worship are built all over the world, and many young and capable men decide to enter the ministry. All these are through the help of the Lord God,” said Brother Dean Marc Sicano, a local congregation KADIWA (the Church’s youth organization) president, choir member, and Technical Support for Video Streaming (TSV) member.
In his homily during the worship service and ordination he officiated at on February 27, 2021 at the Central Temple, the Executive Minister, Brother Eduardo Manalo, emphasized that it is only right that true Christians remain steadfast in the faith in the face of many trials, for God will continue to fulfill in their lives His promises. Things that seem impossible become possible to the entirety of the Church because of the Lord God’s help and mercy.
One of the newly ordained ministers in the said occasion, Brother Felix Nuel Balatbat, expressed, “Truthfully, despite all that are happening in the world, the Church Of Christ continues on in achieving impossible feats in its various works. Moreover, despite having their own share of problems, brethren continue to actively unite with the Church Administration in all its endeavors. All that is happening right now is for the betterment of the entirety of the Church—a strong proof that God is with His people.”
Aside from experiencing God’s fellowship in their lives, Church members also feel His love through the Administration He placed in the Church. Sister Odyssa said, “In the Church Of Christ, there is always brotherly love. I never felt alone in my struggles. I was always visited and prayed for by our resident minister and even by my fellow secretariat officers. Every week, I would ask the deaconess assigned in our area to pray for me and anoint me with oil.”
With constant prayers to the Lord, days after her surgery, Sister Odyssa’s health became better. She happily expressed, “I and my husband felt relieved to hear from our doctor that I can still get pregnant. God truly heeds our prayers.”
Sister Odyssa now continues to fulfill her duty as the head secretary in the Local Congregation of Green Condo (formerly New Era Housing). Sharing her conviction, she said, “My whole family will continue fulfilling our Church duties. We will also continue worshiping the Lord God. We will not be hindered no matter what trials come our way for we have God Who makes the impossible possible for His people.”
“Most recently, I was Covid positive. Such an experience, I believe, God allowed to happen to remind me that no matter what, no matter how severe the trial, I just need to always call unto Him through prayers. With daily devotional prayers, God gave me the strength—physically, mentally, and spiritually—to fight the virus. And so, I promise to always live righteously, to share my faith, to raise my children in the Christian way of life, and to perform my duties faithfully and righteously until the end.”
Buklod Vice President | Lahaina, Hawaii-Pacific
“I was paralyzed twice due to stroke. During the second time, I could not move half of my body. Day and night I prayed to the Lord God and weekly I requested to be anointed with oil. After two years, God gave me back my body’s strength. Because of that, I all the more became firm in my trust in Him. I learned to be enduring and became more prayerful to Him. The support from ministers and Church officers is truly important for me. When they visit our home, I and my family feel so happy, especially when they relay to us instructions from the Church Administration and pray for our welfare. In the Church, I truly feel God’s love. So I promise Him, while I have life, I will remain steadfast in serving Him in the Church Of Christ.”
Finance Officer | Vojens, Denmark GWS, Northern Europe
“My wife had a disease which made it difficult for her to bear a child. But we did not lose hope. We had faith in the Father. We held devotional prayers every night to request from the Father a child that we so longed for. Our resident minister also prayed for us. We also constantly asked to be anointed with oil. And so, even the doctors were amazed that my wife was able to bear a child after eight years of waiting. We firmly believe that God helped us. Our family promises that we will never leave the Church. We will continue to unite with the Church Administration in all the activities launched by Brother Eduardo V. Manalo.”
Head Deacon | Sitka, Alaska
“I am very thankful to the Lord God because He placed an Administration that always guides us. Through our resident minister, along with Church officers, our faith is always strengthened, especially when we experience trials. They visit us and pray for us just like what the Executive Minister, Brother Eduardo V. Manalo, always does to the local congregations of the Church. He always leads the Church. My hope is unfaltering because I also always hear from Brother Eduardo Manalo what is written in the Bible, that the Lord God will never forsake the Church Of Christ. And we feel that in our household. I promise that whatever I may face in life, I will remain serving Him, along with my household. It is my fervent prayer that God allow me to continue helping the Church Administration in inviting other people, so that they would enter the Church and be with us in receiving salvation.”
Deaconess | Berlin, Central Europe