By Antonio C. Gobi, Jr.
Pastor Agapito J. Catane, Jr. and his wife, Glenda Catane, president and Women’s Ministries & Shepherdess International director of CPUC respectively, visited and spoke before the crowd of more than 1000 attendees during the All Samar Federation of Churches on May 26-June 2, 2018 in Hinabangan, Samar with the theme,
“Each One, Reach One”.
The gym was packed with delegates coming from the entire provinces of Samar who flocked together to join this huge event. Reminiscing the years when they were assigned in Catbalogan district, the first lady of CPUC shared her sentiments. “Samareños are also my family because we’ve been here for a number of years and despite our ups and downs, you’ve been showing your generosity and hospitality to our family. Samar is considered as our second home since it is where my lovely daughters were born. Had it not been for your support and cooperation, we cannot achieve what we are now. To God be the glory,” she commented during the Sabbath school program when she gave the lecture about “Temptation Families Face”.
She stressed that in order to have a strong family, we need to have a strong relationship with God, to nourish our children spiritually and become a good example to them.
On the Hour of Worship, Pastor Catane inspired the souls of Christian believers to remain Faithful to God and to support the vision of the Samareños for Samar Adventist Mission (SAM). “Let us keep on dreaming! Samar Adventist Mission is soon to be realized. Our dream is almost done. Let us do our best, and let us support the mission of the church. May each one should reach one. Your dream is also the vision of our leaders to expand the work. With earnest prayer, we need to be united for aiming our desire to be generous and faithful giver, for this is the reason of our existence, this is the reason for having our own mission in Samar.”
The president reported the result of the previous evaluation done last April in East Visayan Conference (EVC) office for SAM, attended by officers of Southern Asia-Pacific Division (SSD) headed by the president, Pastor Samuel Saw, along with the CPUC officers and the field secretary of Samar, Dr. Emerson Lucion, together with the whole forces of EVC executive committee and Samar district pastors. They were discussing about financial stability, the church membership and the consistency for the development of the said mission. The result of the evaluation was positive and the evaluating team made a recommendation for an immediate action. The committee decided to call upon a special constituency meeting on July 20, 2018 in Tacloban Central Church for the separation of Samar territory from the East Visayan Conference.
Meanwhile, on Sabbath afternoon, Philippine Ambassador Ben Tejano in Papua New Guinea and his wife, inspired the Samareños to remain strong and be united with one another. “Before when somebody knew that you came from Samar, that you are a Waraynon, it means, ‘You are nothing and you have nothing’. People mocked
and walked away from you. They made a distance with the impression that Samareños are ignorant and primitive people because of extreme poverty, slavery and lack of formal education. But to tell you, Samareños are loving and generous people, blessed and like any other people who are being forgiven by the blood of the Lamb. Let’s make a difference!” commented the veteran ambassador.
Ambassador Tejano promised his people to support Samar Adventist Mission and even donated half of his land in Mapanas, Northern Samar for the building of the academy and other mission projects for the sake of God’s work. Before he left, he handed a cash assistance for the federation and headed on his way towards Tacloban airport to catch his flight to Manila and to Papua New Guinea on the following day.
Dr. Lucion stated, “Ambassador Tejano is the modern Joseph in our time. God called him to represent his people in Papua New Guinea and to be a blessing to us, too. He is not only to represent the office of the President, but also, he is there to represent the Office of God as an Ambassador for Christ.” Moreover, Pastor Samuel
Salloman, EVC president; Laarni De Leon, EVC treasurer; and the rest of the departmental directors, showed their support for the development of His work. The delegates were also entertained by the Gospel songs of the Exodus singers from Cagayan De Oro City and Samar Advent Voices Emissary (SAVE).
The federation ended successfully. The brethren parted their ways, bringing the fire of faith to reach the unreached and to share the love of Jesus to all the people. They also promised to attend the next federation, if not in this world, then it will be in the new world to come.
About the writer: Antonio C. Gobi, Jr. is the communication and youth director of East
Visayan Conference, Tacloban, Leyte.