ARICHEA PREACHES LOVE, PRAYS FOR AIMP Buenaventura visits NAFAUM Convocation
5 January- Unprecedented events took place today in the convocation of the National Association of Filipino American United Methodists (NAFAUM) in Central United Methodist Church, Manila, Philippines.
In the second study of a three-part Bible study series, the Rev. Daniel Arichea, Retired Bishop of the UMC emphasized the call for the Church to express love in more tangible ways amidst the diversity within. Themed as “Therefore Go in Unity”, Arichea expounded on the writings of Paul to the Corinthians. After expounding over the diversity of spiritual gifts among the believers in 1 Corinthians 12, he furthered that as per the succeeding chapter of the first letter of Paul to the Corinthians, such gifts are nonsense and futile if not used inspired and motivated by love towards God and towards one another. He points out that such love includes loving beyond economic, social, political and even between gender lines.
In addition, Arichea highlighted the parallelism between the Corinthian church and the Philippine Methodist church of today as he claimed that the divisions within the former are also present in the later. He added that the reason of such is the absence of authentic love within the church.
In response, delegates shared their opinions and laments over the state of the church. One of the issues pointed out is that of the Ang Iglesia Metodista sa Pilipinas (AIMP) that decided to form a new organization away from that of the United Methodist Church.
After the study, the Rev. George Buenaventura, one of the leaders of AIMP was warmly welcomed in the plenary. Buenaventura extended the greetings of his denomination to the delegates, and wished them the best as the delegates confer together. In response, the delegates, inspired by the lecture of Arichea calling for the church to love, joined hands and prayed, also led by Arichea. ###
THEREFORE GO BECAUSE GOD IS THERE! Arichea, Tapia, Reyes, Bautista inspire NAFAUM Delegates
4 January- Some of the country’s leading Biblical scholars and Church leaders joined forces in the second day of National Association of Filipino American United Methodists (NAFAUM) convocation in Central United Methodist Church, Manila.
The Rev. Dr. Daniel Arichea, Retired Bishop of the United Methodist Church, led the morning Bible Study focusing in the theme “Therefore Go for Justice.” In the study, he weaved in that the God has consistently been on the side of the poor, and that the “…In God, it is always the strong adjusting for the weak….” In this, Arichea drew parallelism between how God reached out to a weak humanity. He then challenged the delegates to live a life of justice and righteousness because God is just and that the Just God requires his followers to be just and righteous as well. Posed by an inquiry regarding religious pluralism, Arichea claims that “Christ is above all” where he recognized that God is at work in the lives of every individual regardless of religion.
Following the lecture of Arichea is the Keynote Address of the Rev. Dr. Elizabeth Tapia. Tapia, herself a balikbayan is currently a Global Ministries Missionary of the United Methodist Church and Professor of Theology, Bible and Mission in John Wesley College, Tuguegarao after serving for years in the United States. In her message, Tapia highlighted the role of the young people in the struggle for justice through a performance of the Teatro Ekyumenical of the National Council of Churches in the Philippines. She also presented statistical facts and possible mission trends that calls for action of the entire Church.
Also, the National Council of Churches in the Philippines (NCCP) General Secretary, the Padi Rex Reyes, Jr, delivered an update of the situation of the Philippines, especially of the Philippine churches in their collective pursuit for peace and justice. He highlighted the participation of the ecumenical community in fighting for a just and lasting peace in the country by pushing the National Democratic Front- Philippines (NDFP) and the Government of the Philippines to resume peace talks to end the 49 years of armed communist insurgency. A key feature of the involvement of the NCCP is for the signing of the Comprehensive Agreement on Socio-Economic Reforms (CASER).
In response to the situationer presented by Reyes, the Rev. Liberator Bautista, Assistant General Secretary for United Nations and International Affairs of the General Board of Church and Society of UMC provided a response. There he singled out that even if the birth of Protestant movements in the country is ideologically motivated, he said that what is clear in the UMC stance is that “…Jesus is peace. There is no alternative to peace but Jesus….” ###
NAFAUM Convenes in Central
We rejoice in diversity, Francisco calls
3 January- Members of the National Association of Filipino American United Methodists (NAFAUM) together with the laity and the clergy from the various conferences in the Philippines gathered for a four day convocation starting today in the historic Central United Methodist Church, Manila, Philippines. The event, themed “Balik 2018 Bayanihan” is the 16th convocation of NAFAUM, and their first in the country. Underlying the theme is the claim of the organizers according to the souvenir program of the event that there is a deep longing for “…Filipinos in the United States, whether US citizen or permanent citizen…to visit the land of their roots. Ninety delegates joined the convocation.
In the Opening Plenary, officers of NAFAUM including Mr. Haniel Garibay, President, and Mr. Pros Tumonong, Treasurer, presented the status of the organization. Further, it served as a venue for a celebration as to how God has worked and is working in the NAFAUM.
The Rev. Ciriaco Francisco, Bishop of Manila Episcopal Area, the Host Episcopal Area, served as the preacher in the Opening Worship. There he pointed out that the United Methodist identity is intertwined with the celebration of the Eucharist in the gathering of the community of faith. There, he calls for the Church to rejoice in diversity as Jesus epitomized what inclusivity is as Jesus ate the first Eucharist with the disciple who later betrayed him. After the proclamation of the Word, the Rev. Pedro M. Torio, Jr, the President of the College of Bishops of the Philippines Central Conference celebrated the Eucharist with the Rev. Francisco. Also in the said Worship, members of NAFAUM who went ahead with the Lord were solemnly remembered.
To cap the day, the sons of the late Rev. Granadosin rendered musical renditions worshipping God and inspiring God’s people. The proceeds of the concert were appropriated for the Clergy Retirement Fund.
The Central UMC warmly welcomed the delegates. It is under the leadership of Rev. Dr. Menre Mendillo, Administrative Pastor, Mr. Dario Borje, Church Council Chairperson, and Justice Ruben Reyes (Ret), Lay Leader. #
As approved and through a resolution during the
2nd NYCM (2010 2012) in The United Methodist Church, Taytay, Rizal, the NUMYFP Sunday shall be celebrated and observed every third Sunday of January.
The following are the objectives and the reminders for the said celebration:
1. Please coordinate properly and politely the celebration of the NUMYFP Sunday to all the church workers. Seek the approval of concerned and authorized person/s (CFA chairperson, church council chairperson and church workers) for the collection of the special offering.
2. This is in commemoration of the First National Conference of the Methodist Youth Fellowship held on January 1952.
3. We strongly encourage the local levels to collect a special offering during the NUMYFP Sunday.
4. The collected offerings will be forwarded to the National UMYFP to be used for the 35th National Youth Conference this April.
5. The NUMYFP will provide an available Worship Liturgy as an option to be used for the said NUMYFP Sunday.