Fil-Am Member Fulfills Mission Dream
Bernadette Polinar has been a baptized member of Greater Seattle (Wash.) Filipino-American (Fil-Am) Church for nearly four years. Since hearing about the mission trips Fil-Am would take every couple of years, she had been dreaming of bringing a mission group to her hometown of Batuan, Bohol, Philippines.
Polinar’s passion for Jesus and sharing God’s love and truth with her extended family convinced her to ask Grace Gamponia, medical mission team coordinator, if the Fil-Am Church would be interested in going to Batuan.
“When Bernadette requested to have a mission in Bohol,” says Gamponia, “we did not think twice.”
Normally, a planning process for a church mission trip takes about six months to a year, but the mission trip to Batuan took three years.
A year after Polinar’s request, a team of medical and evangelistic people were recruited to form the medical evangelism group going to the Philippines. The team prayerfully prepared for the pioneering work in the Roman Catholic community of Batuan where there is no Adventist church.
When the time arrived two years later in the Philippines, the team warily watched the progress of a typhoon threatening the island of Bohol. But God intervened, stopping the rain that had been pouring the week before and holding off the rain during the mission trip until after the baptisms on the last day.
By the end of the week, the group from Fil-Am served more than 2,300 people in Batuan and an additional 2,200 people in the neighboring town of Tubigon. They also baptized 52 people and helped 30 more study the Bible for future baptism.
“I praise and thank God who called me to join His Advent movement here in Seattle and for the privilege of sharing His love and truth with my extended family and countrymen,” says Polinar.